Philippine shipping lines plan operations in Asia
Through Arjay L. Balinbin, Senior reporter
SOME Filipino SHIP OWNERS are planning to expand their operations to Asian destinations, a move that is expected to increase capacity amid a global shortage of containers and vessels, an official with the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA ).
MARINA has “granted” for bareboat charter by Iris Logistics, Inc. and PNX-Chelsea Shipping Corp., said agency deputy administrator for operations Nanette V. Dinopol Business world during a telephone interview.
The two national shipping lines can already “engage in regional operations,” she said.
“I have heard that there are other shipowners who are interested, so we are still waiting for them to Fitheir applications. At the moment there are only two ships.
Ms. Dinopol noted that MARINA does not have an existing bareboat charter policy at the moment. “We have already drafted the policy, which will be discussed next week, and we hope to submit it to the board for approval by July or later this month. This is to help our national shipowners expand their operations in the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) region.
She said the consent given to Iris Logistics and PNX-Chelsea Shipping is only valid for one year.
Citing the agency’s circular n ° 2020-01, the official noted that MARINA also issues special permits for the temporary use of national vessels registered in the Philippines on the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines routes of the East ASEAN Growth Zone (BIMP-EAGA) .
The permit is also valid for one year, but MARINA is currently considering an extension of up to three years, Ms Dinopol said. “We have now discovered that we need to modify or revise this circular memorandum to allow national shipowners to expand their operations in the region.”
The shipping industry is currently facing a global container shortage amid the pandemic. This has pushed freight rates up and caused delays in shipments of goods all over the world. In a telephone interview Monday, the president of the Philippine Exporters Confederation, Inc. (Philexport), Sergio R. Ortiz-Luis, Jr. said that the scarcity of space for containers and ships is a problem ” serious ”which requires immediate solutions.
“Some partial remedies are being explored, such as we have national ships that can get a license so they can at least go to regional destinations. Hope this can be resolved. Chartering is also an option for vessels that are not in service, ”he said.
As the demand for sea freight increased, rich countries have “a monopoly on ships, as they are able and willing to pay even double the range,” Ortiz-Luis stressed.
“It is the availability of vessels that affects importers and exporters, so you can expect that if this does not abate it could become a big problem,” he explained.
For Mr. Ortiz-Luis, the worst-case scenario would mean “Christmas without imported goods, targets not met and recovery delayed”.
“Ngayon marami nang exporters who stop their orders from their suppliers such as farmers. It’s a big deal, ”he said.
Philexport’s administrator for the textile sector, Robert M. Young, recently said that the garment industry has experienced shipping delays due to the unavailability of ships.
The industry group said payments are denied to suppliers unable to transport finished products, creating money fltime problems. The delays were estimated between two weeks and almost two months
Furniture exporters have also asked their association, the Philippine Chamber of Furniture Industries, to help them find niches on ships as freight rates rise.
Some exporters who are able to obtain vessels are Fifind it difFicult to pay the “high” fees, said Mr. Ortiz-Luis.
“Ang delivery fees nag-I-increase four times, Fifive times. I am a namin ngayon hinihingi is emergency fund para-pahiramine ‘yung mga nagbo-delivered, kasi other, nakakuha nga ng boat, wala namang pambayad sa plete, maski advanced lang man. “
MARINA said in a statement on Tuesday that “even before the pandemic, the Philippine shipping industry was already facing problems with high freight rates and other shipping charges such as container depots, demurrage and charges. of detention “.
Shipping industry officials who asked not to be identified said Business world last month, that freight rates were still above pre-pandemic levels by around $ 2,000 per box for long-haul routes like Europe and the United States.
They said there was now a downward trend in freight rates and did not expect freight rates to return to pre-pandemic levels in the foreseeable future “due to trade pressure coming from China “, which is still the global manufacturing center.
“The growth in volume from China has been very spectacular. Stores in America and Europe are now restocking and therefore the cargo has moved relentlessly. The Philippines imports a lot from China and (the goods that come from) now 60-70% of the goods arriving at the country’s major ports, ”one of the offisaid cis.