Home » 3PL/4PL, Maritime » PH cargo handlers see 6-8% growth in cargo volume

The Philippine Chamber of Arrastre and Stevedoring Operators (PCASO) expects its members’ cargo volume and revenues to each rise from 6%-8% this year.

PCASO, the largest association of cargo handlers in the Philippines, said its members saw more activities in the first quarter of the year compared to last year. But PCASO president Benjamin Akol warned the growth will be limited to single-digit compared to double-digit registered previous to the global financial crisis in 2008.

“The purchasing power of consumers has increased substantially and that is currently showing in the volume of cargoes passing through our piers,” Akol told PortCalls.

“We expect such trend to carry through to the end of the year,” he added.

“Domestic volume has been pushing our volume while foreign cargoes, particularly exports, have also modestly increased,” Akol said.

“As long as the purchasing power of consumers remains high, our volume and revenues will increase.”

Since 2008, high operating costs have affected PCASO members’ profitability. Some members posted negative to flat growth from 2008 to last year.

Just recently, PCASO asked the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) for a 30% rate increase for handling general cargoes and a 20% rate increase in containerized cargo due to progressive increases in the cost of fuel, labor, power, and spare parts over the last five years.

Aside from PCASO, port operators International Container Terminal Services, Inc and Asian Terminals, Inc have petitioned PPA for a 21% hike in cargo-related handling increase.

“The petition we filed is really a cost-recovery scheme and will not affect our revenues,” Christian Gonzalez, Manila International Container Terminal general manager, said.

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