Shipping agents seek amendments to trans-shipment rules

Published June 6, 2021
The PSSA has asked for five amendments in the Customs Act 1969, including enhancing the limit of ocean losses on bulk oil cargo to 0.50 per cent of the manifested quantity. — AFP/File
The PSSA has asked for five amendments in the Customs Act 1969, including enhancing the limit of ocean losses on bulk oil cargo to 0.50 per cent of the manifested quantity. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: In its Budget 2021-22 proposals shared on Saturday, the Pakistan Ship’s Agents Association (PSSA) urged the government to facilitate re-export of shipments by amending trans-shipment rules as it was shifting businesses from local ports to other facilities in the region.

The PSSA asked the government to amend Rule 510A of SRO 03(I)/2021, Jan 4, 2021, related to the “trans-shipment of imported cargo from gateway port to a foreign port”. Under the rules, only Full Con­tainer Load (FCL) or sealed cargo containers are allowed for “International trans-shipment (IT)” via seaports in Pakistan.

PSSA releases proposals for incoming budget

While ship agents have asked the government to allow trans-shipment of Less than Container Load (LCL) cargoes too, which are forwarded to the country of origin in the form of “grouped shipment” as an international business practice. Allowing LCL cargo will enhance business opportunities and revenue generation for the sector, the association added.

The PSSA has asked for five amendments in the Customs Act 1969, including enhancing the limit of ocean losses on bulk oil cargo to 0.50 per cent of the manifested quantity. The other demand was an amendment in clause 24 (i) of section 156 asking that the “shipowner” should be defined as “shipowner not as a local agent”. The association said that amendments were needed in Section 55(1)(e) and 55(2) of the Customs Act as under the current rules a shipping agent is held liable for claims brought by the owner of the goods even when the agent has excluded his liability under the Agency Agreement and in situations where the agent was not involved in default, negligence or willful act.

Published in Dawn, June 6th, 2021

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