10% hike in Manila ports’ cargo-handling rates effective Aug 6

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10% hike in Manila ports’ cargo-handling rates effective Aug 6
  • A 10% increase in cargo-handling rates at Manila ports will take effect on August 6
  • The hike—the first of two tranches—is part of the 16% increase in tariff at Manila International Container Terminal and Manila South Harbor approved by the Philippine Ports Authority
  • The second tranche of 6% will take effect not earlier than six months after effectivity of the first tranche
  • PPA’s Commercial Services Department will issue the revised schedule of cargo-handling tariff for MICT and Manila South Harbor within 15 days from the publication of memorandum circular 007-2024

A 10% increase in cargo-handling rates at Manila ports will take effect on August 6.

The hike—the first of two tranches—is part of the 16% increase in tariff at Manila International Container Terminal (MICT) and Manila South Harbor under Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 007-2024 published on June 26.

The circular prescribes the tariff increase as approved by the PPA Board under Resolution Nos. 3298 and 3299.

The second tranche of 6% will be implemented not earlier than six months after effectivity of the first tranche.

PPA’s Commercial Services Department will issue the revised schedule of cargo-handling tariff for MICT and Manila South Harbor within 15 days from the publication of MC 007-2024.

Port operator Asian Terminals Inc. (ATI) earlier proposed a 16.55% upward adjustment in the cargo-handling tariff and other related and miscellaneous charges at Manila South Harbor while International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) petitioned for a 17% increase in cargo-handling tariff, excluding transshipment, for MICT. A virtual public hearing on their petitions was conducted by PPA on April 19.

READ: ATI, ICTSI seek double-digit cargo-handling tariff hikes

Under PPA rules, the cargo-handling/terminal operator may apply for a cargo-handling tariff adjustment if the consumer price index (CPI) has increased by at least 5% within a three-year period.

Both ATI and ICTSI during the public hearing said CPI had increased by at least 5% since the effectivity of the last tariff increase.

The last cargo-handling tariff rate adjustment for the two ports was in 2021, when PPA granted a 10% rate increase implemented in two tranches—2% in 2021 and 8% in 2022.

Both terminal operators said that based on their calculations, their petitions would have a minimal impact (less than 1% increase) on the cost of basic goods and commodities.

Prior to the approval of the tariff adjustment, the Philippine Exporters Confederation, Inc. (PHILEXPORT) asked PPA to defer the increase until the export industry has recovered from unstable market conditions.

PHILEXPORT said the looming cargo-handling tariff increase comes on the heels of the expansion in storage charges for foreign containerized cargoes at all PPA ports in January 2024.

PPA MC No. 021-2023 provides a 32% increase in storage charges for foreign containerized cargoes and imposes a surcharge on the storage fee of reefer containers.

Trade groups, including PHILEXPORT, had also opposed the increase, noting it was too high and would hurt the economy and the stakeholders already facing persistent inflation and a weak global economy. – Roumina Pablo