§ 811. Investigations as to cost of merchant vessels
The Secretary of Transportation shall investigate the relative cost of building merchant vessels in the United States and in foreign maritime countries, and the relative cost, advantages, and disadvantages of operating in the foreign trade vessels under United States registry and under foreign registry. The Secretary shall examine the rules under which vessels are constructed abroad and in the United States, and the methods of classifying and rating same, and the Secretary shall examine into the subject of marine insurance, the number of companies in the United States, domestic and foreign, engaging in marine insurance, the extent of the insurance on hulls and cargoes placed or written in the United States, and the extent of reinsurance of American maritime risks in foreign companies, and ascertain what steps may be necessary to develop an ample marine insurance system as an aid in the development of an American merchant marine. The Secretary shall examine the navigation laws of the United States and the rules and regulations thereunder, and make such recommendations to the Congress as the Secretary deems proper for the amendment, improvement, and revision of such laws, and for the development of the American merchant marine. The Secretary shall investigate the legal status of mortgage loans on vessel property, with a view to means of improving the security of such loans and of encouraging investment in American shipping.
The Secretary shall, on or before the 1st day of December in each year, make a report to the Congress, which shall include his recommendations and the results of his investigations, a summary of his transactions, and a statement of all expenditures and receipts under this chapter, and of the operations of any corporation in which the United States is a stockholder, and the names and compensation of all persons employed by the Secretary of Transportation.