Demurrage Payment Declines To $19m

Officials of GSA and other agencies at the high table


Head of Shipper Services and Trade Facilitation of the Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA), Monica Josiah, say there has been a decline in demurrage payment since the Authority embarked on the sensitization campaign.

She said the estimated demurrage payment declined in 2021 to $19 million relative to the $76 million recorded in 2017.

She mentioned that the downward trajectory of these figures bears testimony of the impacts of the campaign and the government’s initiatives and interventions in the cargo clearance process.

“This includes the like of the Paperless Port Project and pre-arrival declaration in the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUMS),” she added.

She was speaking at a seminar on Container Demurrage at the GSA head office in Accra.

The seminar was aimed at pursuing a further decline in the charges levied by the shipping line to the importer in cases where they have not taken delivery of the full container and move it out of the port/terminal area for unpacking within the allowed free days.

Deputy Secretary of the Tema Chapter of the Ghana Institute Of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Romeo Frimpong, said demurrage payment has to be avoided since it actually increases the cost of doing business at the port.

GIFF, he stated is doing it best together with GSA to make sure demurrage payments are avoided.

A representative of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Micheal Nkansah Okyere, in his presentation noted that, shipper education is required to ensure the right procedure is followed to avoid demurrage.

He recommended that shippers submit genuine documents, start the clearance process before the vessel arrives and make sure they have secured a license and permit.

“And there should be full automation of the clearance process and integration of various service providers” he added.

By Hudda Bala Abdul Manan