The Telegraph
Saturday , July 5 , 2014
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Case for cargo handling fee

CPT chairman R.P. S. Kahlon (right) with director-general of shipping Gautam Chatterjee in Calcutta on Friday. (PTI)

Calcutta, July 4: The Calcutta Port Trust (CPT) is in favour of earning revenue from private cargo handlers for onshore operations, provided this is implemented across all the major ports.

“If there is any step which leads to an increase in revenue, it is welcome. But it has to be notified by the ministry based on the provisions of the Major Port Trust Act and shall be applicable to all ports so that our port does not suffer vis--vis others,” CPT chairman R.P.S. Kahlon today said on the sidelines of an event of the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Kahlon said if the practice was introduced only in the Calcutta port, it would push up the overall cost for the importer/exporter and dent the competitiveness of CPT compared with the neighbouring ports. “No stevedores (cargo handlers) would pay money out of his pocket. They will only charge it from the client,” he said.

Kahlon’s comments come on the back of a letter from the vigilance wing of the ministry of shipping to the chairman of all the major ports, including the CPT, seeking an explanation of the irregularities in cargo handling.

Kahlon today said a committee had been set up, headed by Cochin Port trust chairman Paul Anthony, to explore the possibility of revenue sharing for cargo handling.