Importers and clearing agents operating at the nation’s seaports can now heave a sigh of relieve as the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) yesterday directed shipping companies to, henceforth, refund container deposit fee within 10 days.
Clearing agents and importers have consistently raised the alarm over the delay by shipping companies in refunding container deposits, days after returning the container.
However, speaking when he led the agency on a courtesy visit to Maersk Line and Meditaranean Shipping Company (MSC) in Lagos, the executive secretary of Shippers’ Council, Emmanuel Jime, however, directed refund of demurrage charges to importers and clearing agents within 10 days.
He also urged the shipping companies to stop charging importers and clearing agents demurrage during network downtime at the seaports
Jime also sought for the cooperation and collaboration with shipping companies and explained that the directive was in a bid to drive efficiency, transparency and effectiveness of port processes.
He said: “Shipping companies should adhere to government directives on evacuation of empty containers out of the country, shipping companies should ensure that consignees are not charged demurrage within the period of network down time, shipping companies must give adequate notification on the arrival of vessels and stemming of containers to shippers.