Global Shippers Forum calls for all-in rates, ending surcharges
THE Global Shippers Forum (GSF) has relaunched its campaign that calls for an end to the myriad of shipping surcharges levied by ocean liners that chairman Sean van Dort described as being 'a cancer in our industry, for which there appears to be no medicine
THE Global Shippers Forum (GSF) has relaunched its campaign that calls for an end to the myriad of shipping surcharges levied by ocean liners that chairman Sean van Dort described as being 'a cancer in our industry, for which there appears to be no medicine.'
He appealed to countries to consider legislation introduced in Sri Lanka in 2014, which specified that all quotes for shipping containerised cargo must cover the complete cost of the carriage of goods from origin to destination or agreed delivery points, and effectively introduce all-in freight rates to the country's shippers and consignees.
Speaking to London's Loadstar shortly after the conclusion of the annual Global Shippers Forum gathering in London, Mr van Dort was quoted as saying: 'The golden rule is that the contracting party is liable for all prices, which means the service provider cannot issue charges from a non-contracting party.
'That means terminal charges applied by ports to shipping lines, or container washing facilities to shipping lines, cannot be passed on to shippers, because shippers are excluded from these contracts.
'Sri Lanka had 44 surcharges for imports and most of these were purchased on CIF [cost, insurance, freight], and to secure volumes the shipping lines offered very low freight rates and used the surcharges to make up their earnings,' he said.
The Sri Lanka law lowered the cost of exporting out of Colombo by 32 to 48 per cent, and Mr van Dort called on legislators from other nations to follow suit.
'The fact is that Sri Lanka cannot do this on its own - we need other countries to introduce similar legislation, and I understand that Nigeria, for one, is looking very closely at this,' he said.
UK Freight Transport Association deputy chief executive James Hookham added: 'What we are looking for is for carriers to provide us with all-in pricing, just as you have in the airline industry.'