PTML Terminal, the foremost roll-on roll-off (RoRo) terminal in Nigeria owned by the Grimaldi Group, has granted an unprecedented 50 per cent to 75 per cent storage waivers for all imported used vehicles discharged at the terminal from 2008 to 2012.
“At present there are over 2,500 vehicles which have been staying in the terminal for more than six months.
PTML have handled more than 600,000 vehicles in the last five years, yet we never experienced any congestion, as we have been constantly investing in infrastructure and new equipment. However, the emerging challenge is the area occupied by overtime vehicles within same period which has increased to an extent that one third of our off-dock facility is dedicated to this cargo. This is becoming a cause of concern for us because we are recording a growing number of vehicles being discharged in Lagos and we want to ensure that our terminal can handle all of them without delay,” Executive Director at PTML, Mr. Ascanio Russo, said.
The initiative of PTML is clearly aimed at supporting government action on overtime vehicles, preventing any future port congestion, similar to the one experienced in the container terminals in the past and to avoid that more vehicles bound for Nigeria are discharged to neighbouring ports in the region.
“PTML is the biggest RoRo facility in West Africa and the hub of Grimaldi operations. It will be a blow for all of us if cargo destined to Nigeria, is diverted to other ports because there is no capacity in the port to receive these vehicles,” General Manager of PTML, Mr. Tunde Kesahiro, said.
While there are no official records of what the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has auctioned in recent times, there are indications that about 500 units of the overtime vehicles may have been auctioned, with another 980 units gazetted.
However, records at the port indicate that only 150 units of these have been claimed for almost one month that the exercise commenced.
A clearing agent operating at the terminal, Mr. Godswill Nwanna, said that, in spite of the current efforts of government, through the Customs, to rid the ports of overtime cargo, it is unlikely that all the vehicles will be eventually delivered.
The only possible solution, according to him, would be to move these vehicles to a government warehouse, as has been done in the past for overtime container which were moved to Ikorodu Lighter Terminal (ILT), Ikorodu, Lagos.
This exceptional and unconditional waiver granted by PTML is expected to assist the importers in taking delivery of their cargoes without further delay and prevent any future congestion.
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