The British International Freight Association (BIFA), which has supported the end of the spurious surcharges applied by container shipping companies, has welcomed the announcements made by some companies that they will stop Low Sulfur Fuel Surcharges.
The Trade Association accused carriers of speculating when they announced in 2018 that they would introduce Low Sulfur Surcharges in advance before the effective entry into force of the IMO 2020 regulation, which came into force on January 1, 2020.
Rober Keen, general manager of BIFA, said: “Forwarders don’t like tariff surcharges applied of any kind of shipment. We hope that other industries will follow suit and stop their surcharges, as well as reconsider their policies regarding the application of the themselves, from containers to port congestion”. BIFA noted that the number of surcharges and taxes has continued to rise in recent years, “often without any real explanation”.
While some (Fuel) surcharges have been discontinued, one Sea Carrier is introducing a Merchant Haulage while another carrier is introducing the Container Compliance Charge.
Keen said: “If a shipper enters into a contract to buy goods, they should know exactly what they are paying for and that price shouldn’t change. Where is the justification for adding a surcharge to the overheads involved in running the business. container shipping? ” Regardless of the type of transport a shipper uses to ship his goods, additional surcharges imposed by shipping companies should not be allowed. The general manager of BIFA concluded by arguing that the surcharges should be included in the freight rates, and manage any fluctuations starting from the freight rates.