Thai shippers council calls for curbs against rising shipping costs

Bangkok: The Thai National Shippers Council (TNSC) has called for the government to help solve rising shipping costs.

The council reckons rising shipping costs could ruin the export competitiveness and worsen the burden for shippers in the country next year.

At least 7 of 20 shipping lines that Thai shippers use have announced increases in terminal handling charges for dry containers by 62%-74%, depending on container size, to be effective from January 1.

"The cost of maritime shipments could increase by BT10bn a year under the higher terminal handling charges by many logistic companies. It will totally destroy Thai exporters' competitiveness and obstruct Thai shipment competency," said Nopporn Thepsithar, chairman of the TNSC.

He called for government agencies such as the Internal Trade Department under the Commerce Ministry to look into shipping firms' plans to increase the charges and examine if these rising prices really reflect operational costs at a time when global fuel prices are dropping.

The shipping firms plan to add even more charges under the Intra-Asia Discussion Agreement.

“The government should set out measures to solve the problem urgently,” the council said. [10/12/14]

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