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Yard utilization at the Port of Manila is down to 64% as of March 4 from 98% in January 3. Photo courtesy of port operator Asian Terminals Inc.

The Port of Manila (POM) is no longer congested with the port’s yard utilization level was down to 64% as of March 4, 2019.

As of this date, the number of laden containers piled up at Manila South Harbor stood at 78% while empty containers were only occupying 47% of the yard, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said in a press statement.

This represents a 34.7% drop from January 3, when the port recorded a yard utilization rate of 98% and the number of laden and empty containers was at 100 percent and 93%, respectively.

“The Manila port’s efforts have already resulted in the drastic decline of the yard utilization for laden and empty containers,” POM district collector Atty Rhea Gregorio said.

The POM, in partnership with its stakeholders and port operator Asian Terminals Inc. (ATI), has implemented measures to address the problem of high yard utilization at the port. ATI operates the Manila South Harbor.

Authorized personnel conducted inventory of empty containers at the ATI yard by virtue of the letter of authority issued by Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero while overstaying empty containers were issued demand letters and Decrees of Abandonment.

This was followed by POM shipping out overstaying laden containers to the ATI yard in Sta. Clara, Batangas to free up space inside the port. POM strictly monitors the return and load out of empty containers.

“About 400 overstaying containers had been transferred from the Port of Manila to the ATI facility. The removal of the remaining containers is ongoing,” Gregorio said.

Moreover, monitoring at the South Harbor showed a decline on the number of vessels at queue from as high as 21 vessels to only six vessels as of March 5.

“Faster processing of transactions for the release of shipments had resulted in less delays in berthing of vessels and unloading of shipping containers in the yard,” she said.

“This proves beyond that there is no more congestion at POM,” Gregorio added.

“The continued decline in the utilization level of the Port of Manila is a clear manifestation of a robust partnership between the government and private sector,” she said.

Evacuating empty containers

In mid-February, ATI and several international shipping lines agreed to share vessels and optimize terminal resources to immediately evacuate empty containers from Manila and surrounding areas through Manila South Harbor.

Since then, ATI said CMA CGM Group, T.S. Lines, Evergreen, Yang Ming Lines, Wan Hai Lines, and Hyundai Merchant Marine have fast-tracked the re-circulation of empty containers to other Asian destinations, after committing to jointly pull out 10,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) from Manila South Harbor each week.

Despite the fire that hit the BOC headquarters in Manila South Harbor last February 22, over 14,000 TEUs of laden boxes were delivered to customers in the final week of last month. ATI noted this is a record high for Manila South Harbor.

ATI is currently complementing ongoing port efficiency measures by developing more container yard facilities outside the Port of Manila that are expected to be operational by the second quarter.

ATI is also expanding the role of its Sta. Mesa container yard to accommodate cleared overstaying laden boxes, in accordance with recent directives from the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA). PPA last week notified and directed all importers, consignees, cargo owners, and shippers to withdraw within 15 days from March 1 all their Customs-cleared containers from Manila ports to reduce yard utilization.

2 Responses to “Port of Manila is congestion-free, says BOC”

  1. How about MICP?

    Reply

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