Controlling shipping line surcharge increases for market stability


Port authorities and maritime inspectorates must monitor shipping company fees and surcharges to prevent violations amidst rising container transportation costs for imports and exports.

Controlling shipping line surcharge increases for market stability
A container is loaded on a boat in Cát Lái Port, HCM City. — VNA/VNS Photo

Port authorities and maritime inspectorates are ordered to examine the fares charged by shipping companies and scrutinise surcharges to prevent any violations amidst the surge in additional fees for container transportation services in import and export shipping.

The operational fees imposed by foreign shipping companies have risen by 10-22 per cent, three times higher than the adjusted fees for container handling at Vietnamese seaports.

The gains are attributed to global tensions and pricing management, according to the shipping companies.

The shipping companies charge US$140-200 from the cargo owners but only reimburse the ports with $36-66, which accounts for merely one-third of the total amount.

The Vietnam Maritime Administration is concerned that there is a possibility of shipping companies intentionally exploiting global market fluctuations to increase service prices.

As a result, measures will be implemented to monitor and control this situation.

Nguyễn Thị Thương, Deputy Head of the Shipping and Maritime Services Department at the Vietnam Maritime Administration, said that the agency will enforce prescribed penalties and issue directives to port authorities to strengthen inspections and oversight of price hikes by shipping lines.

It will also work closely with relevant state management agencies, such as the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and the Ministry of Finance (MoF), to control the activities of shipping companies regarding freight rates and surcharges, ensuring transparent and publicly disclosed pricing.

Previously, the implementation of Circular No.39 issued by the Ministry of Transport led to a 10 per cent in the charges for loading and unloading services at seaports, causing several shipping lines to raise cargo handling surcharges at ports.

This has caused significant dissatisfaction among Vietnamese cargo owners, who have been the most heavily impacted by these cost hikes.


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