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S Korean liner alliance in dispute with Busan Port Authority over extra costs

KOREA Shipping Partnership (KSP), a quasi-alliance of South Korea's liner and feeder operators, is seeking arbitration with regard to Busan Port Authority's request that the carriers bear additional costs of KRW4

S Korean liner alliance in dispute with Busan Port Authority over extra costs
07 June 2020 - 19:06 - Update: 08 June 2020 - 10:16

KOREA Shipping Partnership (KSP), a quasi-alliance of South Korea's liner and feeder operators, is seeking arbitration with regard to Busan Port Authority's request that the carriers bear additional costs of KRW4.6 billion (US$3.76 million) for operating the multi-purpose terminal in Busan New Port for the past year.

KSP said on June 1, 2020, that it had sought mediation from the Korea Commercial Arbitration Board after earlier discussions with BPA failed to reach a resolution.



While additional equipment was installed at the terminal, cargo volumes were below expectations after the Subic Bay yard of Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction went into court protection. The carriers acknowledged that additional costs arose as a result but are disputing the amount.



All South Korean liner and feeder operators are KSP members. However, the multi-purpose terminal was used only by Korea Marine Transport Company (KMTC) Line, Sinokor Merchant Marine, Namsung Shipping, Pan Continental Shipping, Dongjin Shipping, CK Line and Heung-A Line.



KSP was formed at the behest of the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF) in 2017, in an attempt to revive the country's struggling shipping industry following Hanjin Shipping's collapse. Concerned at what it saw as a saturated market, especially for feeder operations, the MOF sought to eliminate duplicated routes.



The arbitrator's involvement means that the issue of accountability for the costs of operating the terminal is likely to be clarified. The adequacy of the operating cost calculated by the BPA is expected to emerge as a key issue in the mediation, reports Container News, Jacksonville.


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