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Port Authority rolls out measures to steer exporters out of rough waters

The Port Authority of Thailand (PAT) is rolling out measures to help exporters suffering from a shortage of containers and the hike in freight fees by several countries, Deputy Transport Minister Atirat Rattanaset said on Thursday.

Earlier this week, the Thai National Shippers’ Council reported that exporters were hit by an inadequate supply of containers, as more than 1,000 of these were still stuck overseas due to Covid-19 restrictions, while the outbreak had also driven up freight fees from 17 to 220 per cent in several countries.

Port Authority rolls out measures to steer exporters out of rough waters

“PAT’s board of directors has approved a budget of Bt389 million to solve the container shortage problem,” Atirat said, announcing two measures:

1) Bangkok Port will reduce the freight fee for empty containers to Bt1,000 per 20-foot equivalent unit (TEU) until March, which will require an operational budget of Bt5.28 million.

2) Laem Chabang Port will provide a cash-back measure of Bt1,000 per TEU until March for businesses which import empty containers. Bt384 million will be used for the purpose.

“PAT hopes these measures will help encourage entrepreneurs to import empty containers, and will gradually fix the problem,” Atirat vowed.

“We estimate that the container shortage will significantly improve by the second quarter as lockdowns will hopefully be eased or lifted in many countries, especially in Europe, and the United States, and they will eventually release the leftover or empty containers,” he added.

Published : February 04, 2021