MULTAN: Government should take strict action against shipping companies and terminal operators for non-compliance of their decision to waive demurrage and detention charges on import shipments despite of prolonged lock down.
Shipping companies are not ready to provide any relief in the clearance of shipment to import based traders and ignoring all decisions of government for extending the demurrage and detention period.
This was stated by President Markazi Anjuman Tajiran Chaudhry Muhammad Umer while talking with Customs Today regarding the non-cooperation of shipping companies and terminal operators for charging demurrage and detention charges on clearance of shipments.
Business community including industrialists’ importers and exporters are taking all safety measures recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) to curtail the spread of COVID-19 and would implement the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) being devised by the provincial and federal government for import related traders and industrialist said that the reduction in policy rate by 6.25 percent since March 17, 2020 is commendable step of the government in the present situation that will positively affect cost of doing business and will encourage the investors and industrialists to make new investment in the country.
The net reduction of more than 6 percent in interest rate in just limited period would cut cost of production, strengthen debt repayment ability and improve the credit worthiness.
Small businesses are facing crisis situation due to corona pandemic and facing severe financial crisis. Government should announce relief package for the small businesses to revive them because corona hit every section of society and business activities are not fully restored so far.
He said that the banks should now also be advised to follow the lines of State Bank of Pakistan immediately accordingly. “The banks should be instructed to revise KIBOR on a monthly basis instead of quarterly basis to pass on the benefit of lower rates speedily to the trade and industry, which are struggling to survive
Due to COVID-19 majority of small businesses have been affected due to the lockdown and business conditions in the country are not in ideal position due to uncertainty. Pakistani exporters are already facing serious issues in competing global markets due to high taxation and energy cost.
Due to prolonged lock down, a big inventory of raw material and import shipments were stuck at ports and shipping companies along with terminal operator are taking benefit of sudden lock down by charging additional demurrage and detention charges to importers and exporter.
This cumulative reduction of more than 6 percent in interest rate in just limited period would cut cost of production, strengthen debt repayment ability and improve the credit worthiness. Markazi Anjuman Tajiran of Pakistan has appealed from Federal Government to provide relief to importers and exporters by waiving demurrage and detention charges occurred due to lock down. Government has announced that shipping companies will not any additional charges which were stuck during lock down period but shipping companies have refused to give any favour to importers and exporters. Shipping Companies are not ready to release their shipment without payment of holding charges.
He said that trader’s and importers from all nationwide unable to afford high demurrage and detention charges compellingly charged by shipping lines and terminal operators due to closure of markets.
He said that cash line has been dried due to continuous closure of markets in the South Punjab and unable to fulfill imbalanced demand of shipping companies for payment of any additional charges.
Government should implement their decisions through exercising necessary laws because shipping companies and terminal operators are disobeying their decision and refused to provide any relief to importers at the time of clearance.
He demanded from Prime Minister of Pakistan to take action against those shipping companies and terminal operator which fails to obey government decisions.