The shipping industry collectively voiced, Canal postponed price increases! The highest increase may exceed 167%!
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) recently announced that the plan to increase canal tolls originally scheduled to take effect on April 15 has been postponed until June 1, 2021.
The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), the Asian Shipowners Association (ASA) and the European Communities Shipowners Association (ECSA) jointly expressed their concerns about the "substantial increase" in later costs in a joint letter. Starting from June 1, 2021, The minimum fee for each transportation booking increased by USD 20,000 (an increase of 57%), and the maximum fee increased by USD 58,500 (an increase of 167%).
The Panama Canal Manager Ricuarte Vásquez Morales said: “The Panama Canal values customer input and is always looking for ways to bring higher value and continuously improve our services.”
The joint letter was sent on March 17, stating that the April 15 start date given by the ACP was too short for the shipping industry and canal users to adjust the relevant procedures.
ACP announced the postponement of the new booking fee date to provide the maritime industry with more time to prepare for the adjustment of the new booking fee.
ICS Secretary-General Guy Platten said: “We are very pleased to see that ACP has responded to the industry’s call to postpone its proposed reservation price increase until June 1, so that the industry has time to make changes to these changes. Time to fully prepare."
The Suez Canal and the Panama Canal are the two most important international canals in the world today. The Panama Canal has carried out nearly 14,000 transits in 2020.
In the Mediterranean region, the navigation of the Suez Canal eliminates the need for European-Asian maritime trade to bypass the Cape of Good Hope in Africa. On the other side of the world, the Panama Canal connects the Pacific and the Atlantic, so that trade and transportation between the two oceans no longer need to bypass the Strait of Magellan and the voyage is greatly shortened.
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