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Vietnamese ports roll out new measures to tackle COVID disruption

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Vietnamese terminals will undergo new measures to maintain container flows following rising COVID-19 rates in the country.

Tan Cang – Cat Lai Terminal (TCCL) and Tan Cang – Hiep Phuoc Terminal (TCHP) in South Vietnam have suffered from “a rapid surge” in over-dwelled import containers due to business closures and lockdowns in the region, the Saigon Newport Corporation (SNP) wrote in a 5 August statement.

To maintain smooth operation of TCCL and TCHP, the Vietnam Maritime Administration has held meetings with port operators and stakeholders to continue smooth supply movements in the country.

On 5 August Hapag-Lloyd announced that container terminals at Tan Cang Cat Lai Port in Ho Chi Minh City suspended container imports in a bid to clear a backlog caused by a COVID-19 outbreak in the area.

“Import volume at TCCL is decreasing significantly,” SNP wrote.

On 3 August, there were nearly 108,800 TEU at TCCL, which accounted for 87.7% of yard capacity, this was reduced to over 106,700 TEU on 4 August, accounting for 85.1% of yard capacity.

“This eased the tension at the yard, helped us to increase vessel handling productivity, and ensure the smooth delivery for those who still go to terminals to pick up containers for production,” SNP added.

From 7 August, the SNP has introduced new measures to keep cargo flowing at TCCL:

  • TCCL will continue the suspension of the movement of import laden containers from ports in Cai Mep area to TCCL as final destination for customer pick-up, except for shipments committed to be picked up by customers within two days since discharged to TCCL yard and affirmed to Operations Centre.
  • TCCL will halt import laden cargo with high yard occupancy – including super-sized and over-sized cargo. In special cases, upon request from shipping lines/customers, SNP “may consider” on a case-by-case basis.
  • Temporary halt on transshipped laden reefer containers to be unstuffed and changed container at yard.
  • Waive 100% change-of-purpose charge upon empty container release to customers.

New measures have also been introduced at TCHP :

  • Container drop-off at TCHP for loading on board vessels will be within a 7-day period prior to Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA).
  • Temporary halt to moving import laden containers from TCHP to TCCL as final destination for customer pick-up, except for shipments committed to be picked by customers within three days since discharged to TCCL yard and affirmed by the Operations Center.
  • To support customers in direct delivery of containers discharged from vessels, SNP will waive its lift-on charge, storage charge, waive 24 hours of reefer monitoring charge and assist submitting manifest file of final destination after consignees complete customs formalities.

“By applying these [policies] it is expected that the high yard density and tensions at TCCL and TCHP in this critical time of social distancing will soon ease off,” SNP wrote.

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