DIRECT CALLERS of the Batangas port will receive a 90% discount on port charges and other vessel-handling fees starting this month to encourage more shippers to course their goods through Batangas instead of the Manila ports, the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) said in a statement.
The Philippine Ports Authority wil give discounts on fees for firms using the Batangas port to incentivize them for helping decongest Manila’s facilities.
Direct caller means having a port included in the rotation of a certain trade route of a vessel, like a Japan-Batangas-Singapore route, PPA General Manager Juan C. Sta. Ana explained via text message.
In its statement, PPA said that the move is meant to attract more direct callers and port users to utilize Batangas port while giving incentives to Manila International Container Terminal (MICT) operator International Container Terminals Services, Inc. (ICTSI) for its share in reducing traffic at the ports of Manila.
For direct callers of Batangas, they can enjoy a 90% discount on port dues to $0.008 per gross revenue ton (GRT) per day from the existing fee of $0.081, as well as a 90% cut in dockage-at-berth to $0.004 per GRT per day from $0.039.
The new rates, however, will be applicable only for six months. The discount for the succeeding six months will be 50% — port dues will be at $0.040 per GRT per day, while dockage-at-berth fees will be at $0.020 per GRT per day.
“This is a big boost in our bid to increase utilization of the Batangas port,” Mr. Sta. Ana stressed, adding that it will offer incentives for foreign vessels at Batangas Container Terminal for one year.
He added that “the new directive has likewise changed the basis in the computation of the dockage-at-berth from per GRT per calendar day or fraction thereof to per GRT per block of 24 hours or fraction thereof.”
PPA said that there are currently at least six international carriers which have been calling at Batangas port since June.
These include MCC Transport Corp., NYK Shipping Lines, SITC Container Lines, American Presidents Lines, Regional Container Lines/Pacific International Lines, and CMA-CGM.
Meanwhile, the port dues for the vessel chartered by ICTSI to bring out overstaying cargoes from Manila to Subic has been reduced $1 per call from the $0.081 per GRT per call, while dockage-at-berth has been cut to $1 per vessel from $0.039 per GRT per calendar day or fraction thereof, the PPA statement read.
PPA said this meant is to incentivize ICTSI for shouldering the cost of moving out all overstaying cargoes at the Manila ports.
ICTSI is chartering a vessel with a capacity of about 1,300 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) with a GRT of 18,321 tons for at least 14 days to ferry empty containers and other overstaying containers from Manila to Subic. “During its stay in the country, the vessel is expected to ship about 4,000-6,000 TEUs out of Manila ports,” PPA said.
Congestion at the Manila ports has continued to decline, with yard utilization almost down to the desired level of 80%. As of Wednesday, PPA reported an 85%-89% yard utilization for the MICT and Manila South Harbor.
The PPA said that MICT operator ICTSI and MSH operator Asian Terminals, Inc. (ATI) will ship out boxes containing ingredients of other consumer items again to reduce the inflationary effects of the congestion at the ports. — CJVDP