The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Nigeria’s port economic regulator, has been slammed for aiding the excesses of foreign shipping lines operating in Nigerian ports.

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Recall that there have been perennial squabble between freight forwarders and shipping lines over failure of the former to refund container deposits paid to them

Freight forwarders have blamed the cause of inability to return empty container to the shipping lines on the failure to acquire holding bays where empties are supposed to be dropped.

Speaking on recently on behalf of the five registered associations under the group- Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Kayode Farinto, National Vice President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) said that despite ripping Nigerians off, NSC sign for the shipping companies to repatriate the funds abroad.

They accused the Council of allowing the shipping companies of getting away with the funds they make from demurrages and unreturned container deposits

The group maintained that if they have been denied signature to repatriate the funds, all the problems would have been solved before now.

On acquisition of holding bays, he stated that there was no hiding place for the operators anymore.

“I don’t know where they want to hide now, every shipping company is expected to have what is called holding bays and you and I know that the various holding bays they have cannot contain the number of empties they have.

“How can you bringing 500 containers and have a holding bay that can contain only 200 containers. Who is fooling who? Meanwhile, you allow our container deposit to be depleting on the trucks and Shippers’ Council continue to sign for them to repatriate this money

“We have studied the intricacies and technicalities of these things, we know it and we are now saying Shippers’ Council should desist from signing this thing for them and if they do that, there would be sanity in our ports.

“It is because we are allowing them to have a field day, you are charging them for deposit, charging container detention and repatriating this money and Nigerians are signing this money to be repatriated.”