Business Community Asks SBP For Waiving Container Detention Charges, Levies

Business community requests SBP to waive charges and levies related to container detention

Imran Zakir

KARACH: The business community raised collective voice to Governor State Bank of Pakistan to its advice shipping companies to waive container detention charges and other levies on cargoes that couldn’t be cleared due to huge backlog in LCs, the need of the hour is to provide maximum relief to the business community.

Ports are witnessing severe congestion as importers are unable to take delivery; supply line disruption means the government has to take corrective measures for efficient mechanisms to check health dangers and Food security issues.

Due to our poor banking practice, delays in clearance of cargo are rendering heavy demurrage and container detention charges and traders are suffering massive financial losses.

These views were expressed by the leaders of the business Community when they invited Governor State Bank of Pakistan on Wednesday at FPCCI head office, Karachi to address their grievances by means of immediate corrective measures to save them from Bankruptcy and huge losses.

Traders said that the waiver would certainly give impetus to seaborne trade and is likely to restart the logistical supply chain in Pakistan, “which is the need of the hour in these difficult times”.

Governor SBP also recommended a joint committee with FPCCI for the resolution of the huge backlog in LCs.
The Governor SBP, said that we will discuss individual or sectorial cases in the joint committee with FPCCI.

Jameel Ahmed also informed that SBP cleared 33,000 cases in the year 2022; and, it took a lot of time, efforts and other resources of SBP. We are expecting an enhanced inflow of dollars in the coming weeks; and, the situation will improve as well vis-à-vis the dearth of dollars for imports.

The committee will comprise 4-5 nominees of FPCCI’s President and, more or less, the same number of SBP officials will be nominated by the governor of the central bank, he added.

President FPCCI Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said the committee on the LC issue will be co-chaired by Suleman Chawla, SVP FPCCI, from the apex body; and, advised the entire business, industry and trade community to bring their cases to the aforementioned committee.

Mian Anjum Nisar, former President FPCCI, highlighted that there are three different markets for dollars operating in the country; with rupee to dollar rates of their own; namely, inter-bank, open market and grey market. SBP should take regulatory action against commercial banks for speculative trading and causing unbearable losses to the businessmen, he added.

Expressing his dismay, Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, immediate past President FPCCI, said that SBP is behaving as if they are the World Bank or IMF; and, not listening to the genuine concerns of the business community. He warned that the situation is so precarious that there may be social unrest due to the fast-amassing economic disarray.

Responding to a media query during the press conference the Governor SBP said that SBP has completed investigation against private banks allegedly involved behind the USD dollar manipulation

‘The central bank is going to take action against banks involved in the dollar manipulations within their foreign exchange operations.
”More details about the investigation will be shared with the media on January 23,” he said.
SBP Governor regarded Timber Association for their 02 Days protest and assured them to resolve their issue.

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