Chittagong’s move to offer OEL exclusive berth rights infuriates others

Chittagong’s move to offer OEL exclusive berth rights infuriates others

Mumbai: A decision to grant a Singaporean feeder line an exclusive berth in Chittagong has infuriated many in the city.

For the first time in its 128-year history the Chittagong Port Authority (CPA) is allotting a berth to a foreign firm, Orient Express Lines (OEL). Other shipping lines, agents and port players have voiced their opposition to the move, saying it would be “detrimental” and “discriminatory” to other lines calling at the Bangladeshi port.

The deal to hand over a berth at the New Mooring Container Terminal will be on a trial three-month basis to begin with.

Chittagong has hitherto always worked on a first come, first served basis, which has led to congestion, something OEL will now avoid with its ‘priority boarding’ deal.

There are a total of 12 feeder operators calling at Chittagong with 44 vessels heading to Colombo, Singapore and Malaysia.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.

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