Shipping and freight corrupt to the core

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By 2017-06-19

By Ishara Gamage

Sri Lanka's shipping and freight industry is corrupt to the core, Immediate Past Chairman of Sri Lanka Shipper's Council and Commercial & Logistics Sector Head of MAS Active (Pvt) Ltd, Sean Van Dort said on Friday (16) night.
Addressing a post session of the 47th Annual General Meeting of the Council, he said that everybody from Managing Directors to Shipping Executives were robbing their own companies by way of kickbacks.

"It seems that only a handful of service providers really go out to canvas business on service and quality of delivery. Trust me, I have worked on both sides of the industry, and I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly," he said.
The Council urged the government to expedite the Sri Lanka Customs Single Window Process, which will bring down their transaction costs and give them a competitive advantage and speed to promote their products.

He however said, "We were involved with the Sri Lanka Customs in establishing the export facilitation centre and we agreed to pay more charges to the government for the sake of speed and time. However, I'm aware that until recently there was great pressure from the Ministry of Finance to the Customs to provide a negative report so that this centre could be scrapped, so that certain entities with vested interests could benefit.'

The Sri Lanka Shipper's Council also called for a total liberalization of the maritime sector, where......age old walls would be brought down.

"As an Island nation we should benefit much more from the maritime sector," Van Dort said.
He also questioned the fear surrounding the privatization of Sri Lankan terminals, as agency networks would still be required to handle ships and husbanding requirements.



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