Customs Licensed Agents and freight forwarders that are doing business at the terminal of the Ports and Terminal Multipurpose Limited (PTML), Tin-Can Island Port Complex in Lagos, have given their approval to the operator to review handling charges by 50 percent.
PTML is the biggest roll-on-roll-off (RORO) terminal in Nigeria, handling a sizable number of vehicles imported into the country.
According to them, special considerations must be given to the fact that Grimaldi Shipping, owners of PTML terminal, has not increased their charges for several years.
In addition, review of handling charges has become necessary in order to avoid a breakdown of quality logistics operations and services PTML offers users of its services.
These reasons were stated in a joint communique, which was issued at the weekend, after a meeting with Ascanio Russo, managing director of Grimaldi Shipping Nigeria, his management team and leaders of the freight forwarding associations to find a common ground on the new charges.
Recall that Grimaldi initially planned to increase the handling charges by 100 percent but after deliberations, it was agreed for the charges to be reviewed upward by 50 percent due to the effect it will have on importers.
“After a thorough explanation from the Management of Grimaldi Agency on the urgent need for this increase, 50 percent was considered to be reasonable and the acceptance of the increase was based on the ever-increasing high cost of operations,” the communique stated.
According to the communique, Grimaldi also agreed to increase its drive to providing world class services, more equipment and good human management.
In addition, the management of Grimaldi assured freight forwarders and other port users that it would provide more equipment to reduce operational cost especially if it receives the rebate, which the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) promised operators during the Covid -19 peak period.
Meanwhile, the representatives of the various freight forwarding associations enjoined members to go about their business peacefully as always even as they assured that no subsequent increment will be made at the port without an interactive meeting with users of port services.
The meeting was attended by representatives of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), led by Samuel Obe, its chapter chairman, and Sunny Ugorji; the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), was represented by George Okafor, its chapter chairman, and Thomas Alor, while the Association of Registered Freight Forwarders of Nigeria (AREFFN) was represented by Emma Ohambele and Chinedum Ogueke.