The Federal Government, acting through the Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), has implemented a 33% reduction in port terminal charges, marking a decrease from the previously proposed increase of 400% to 600% of storage fees. Simultaneously, the government has increased bulk cargo charges by 100%, raising rates from 125% to 250%.
These adjustments were reached during a meeting between the NSC leadership, seaport terminal operators, shipping companies, freight forwarders, and other relevant stakeholders. Additionally, the number of free days for cargo storage at terminals has been extended from three days to five days, providing greater flexibility for shippers and cost reduction opportunities.
Rekiya Dhikru-Yagboyaju, Director of the Public Relations Unit of the Nigerian Shippers Council, confirmed the changes and stated that the reduction in terminal charges from 600% to 400% aims to strike a balance between the needs of terminal operators and shippers.
In addition to the reductions in terminal charges, a consensus was reached at the meeting to increase bulk cargo charges by 100%, acknowledging the changing dynamics of the industry and ensuring fair compensation for services rendered.
A statement issued following the meeting outlined that all complaints regarding inefficiencies by terminal operators will be promptly addressed to improve overall operations and enhance customer satisfaction. Furthermore, a complaints desk has been established at all ports to efficiently resolve issues raised by stakeholders.
Cargo that arrived prior to October 16th will be rated with the previous rates to avoid confusion or discrepancies in billing. Ongoing discussions between terminal operators and the Shippers Council will continue to refine and improve processes, ensuring the interests of all parties are considered and addressed.
These resolutions reflect the commitment of the Nigerian Shippers Council, shipping companies, terminal operators, and relevant associations and stakeholders to fostering a harmonious working environment and addressing industry concerns.