The Management of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), Lagos says henceforth, agents are no longer allowed to return empty containers to the nation’s seaports after being cleared.
The Traffic Manager, Lagos Ports Complex, Mr Victor Oginni, said this while speaking with newsmen at the end of a tour of access roads to the ports on Tuesday.
According to him, the empty containers are henceforth to be delivered directly to shipping companies holding bay.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the clearing agents had been directed to return empty containers to shipping companies holding bay located outside the seaports.
The directive was to enable the management of NPA and other stakeholders effectively manage the traffic situation around Apapa area of Lagos.
“With this directive, shipping companies are expected to have holding bays where their empty containers could be kept while waiting to be taken into the terminals.’’
Oginni explained that it was now the responsibility of shipping companies to return their empty containers to the ports.
According to him, this will eliminate the gridlock being witnessed in Apapa presently.
“Many of the shippers have no holding bays outside the seaports and they may have to make use of rented holding bays to put their containers.
“With this directive, shipping companies must keep their empty containers in their holding bays outside the port location, pending the time for vessel loading.
“The era of free money for shipping companies is gone.
“Agents will no longer have to forfeit their money to shipping companies as they will return empties in due time. This is what shipping companies are avoiding,’’ he said.