Port Axes Lift-Off Fee For Empty Containers

Sihanoukville Autonomous Port announced early this week that starting in September it will stop charging a lift-off fee for empty containers exporting through the port—a move port officials hope will ease access.

“This action is to reduce the traffic problem at the entrance, especially on Saturday and Sunday because the exception would reduce the amount of time spent processing paperwork,” said Pen Sitha, deputy director of the port.

The country manager of Maersk, a freight and transport firm, said the savings to importers and exporters would be minimal.

“I think that the [commercial] benefits of the offer would be quite limited, because the number of empty export containers is very limited, but it would help reduce transportation costs,” said Lam Bui.

Pacific Crown Shipping operations manager Chum Setha also said the decision would have only a slight impact on operations, as only 5 percent of the company’s export containers are empty.

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