Committed to PEOPLE'S RIGHT TO KNOW
Vol. 5 Num 926 Sat. January 06, 2007  
   
Business


Stockpiles Of Goods For Longer Period
Ctg port seeks change in rules to cut container congestion


The Chittagong Port Authority (CPA) has requested the shipping ministry to bring a change in existing rules so that traders cannot keep their imported goods on port premises for a longer period.

The importers usually keep their imported goods on the port premises for 35-40 days, contributing to container congestion.

The CPA in a recent letter to the ministry also sought adjustment of tariffs for keeping containers on port premises.

In seaports of developed countries, importers usually take five-six days to clear containers from the port premises, said Kamrul Hossain, director (Operation) of Chittagong Port.

The CPA also formed a 10-member committee recently to find ways to ease container congestion at the country's premier seaport. The committee also suggested measures so that traders clear their imported goods from the port within the shortest possible time.

The 8-km long port jetties have the standard capacity to accommodate 10,000 containers but the port now houses around 18,000 containers.

An importer has to pay $4.5 a day for keeping one TEU (twenty equivalent unit) container at the port after 28 days from offloading of goods. The traders can keep containers for four days free of cost. They have to pay $1.5 a day after four days.

The CPA requested the shipping ministry to adjust the tariff for keeping containers on port premises. "The tariff was fixed in 1984 and it could not be raised due to various pressures," said the director of Chittagong Port.

CPA Chairman Mosleh Uddin Ahmed said importers should clear the imported goods from the port area as early as possible to ease the congestion.