Home » Breaking News, Ports/Terminals » 17% cargo-handling rate hike approved for Manila ports

THE Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) has approved a 17% cargo-handling rate increase for vessel-related operations at Manila ports.

Just like the last increase, the tariff hike will be implemented in two tranches — the first 11% starting next month and the remaining 6% six months after.

The hike is less than the respective 21% and 19% hike petitioned for by Manila International Container Terminal operator International Container Terminal Services, Inc (ICTSI) and South Harbor operator Asian Terminals, Inc (ATI).

PPA port district manager for Luzon engineer Constante Fariñas said the increase will allow ICTSI and ATI to recover from losses brought about by slow economic conditions and soaring fuel prices.

“The PPA Board already approved last week the increase but (it was) significantly lower than what was petitioned to mitigate its effects on stakeholders,” Fariñas explained. “It is also the percentage tolerable to shipping lines (and) will have minimal effects on their operations.”

ATI was grateful for the increase but noted it wasn’t enough to cover all additional expenses.

“We asked for 19% but they only approved 17% so how can we really recover our added expenses?” ATI executive vice president Ernst Schulze said at the sidelines of yesterday’s launch of the pick-up and drop-off station for passengers and well-wishers at the South Harbor.

“(The increase) will not affect our revenues per se but what will suffer is the bottom line so we really just need to take extra efficiency measures to reduce the effects of what was approved,” Schulze explained.

ICTSI and the Association of International Shipping Lines (AISL) could not be reached for comment as of press time yesterday. It may be recalled that an official of an AISL member line said the association felt the rate increase was untimely due to overcapacity and the slow global business.


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