COVID – 19: NPA Extends Suspension of Demurrage Charges

Ms Hadiza Usman,NPA MD

By Sandra Chukwunyere

In order to cushion the economic effects of the total lockdown which came as a result of the breakout of the Coronavirus otherwise called covid – 19, the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA has called on the terminal operators operating within the nation’s seaports to extend to another 14 days, the period of collection of Port  charges like storage charges, demurrage charges dues to because of the on going stay at home order by the Federal Government.
The authority also warned that failure to comply with the directives will attract appropriate sanctions.
“The authority will not tolerate any of noncompliance with directive and not hesitate to apply the appropriate sanctions.”
The relief gesture to port users, according to the General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications, NPA, Jatto A. Aasms is a measures given to port users due to outbreak of COVID-19- within the period the stay at home order will last.

In the same statement signed by Jatto A. Adams, the organisation noted that the Nigerian Ports Authority has directed all Terminal operators to extend the suspension of all applicable terminal storage fees on consignments (demurrage) for another fourteen days effective April 13, 2020. This follows the extension of the Lockdown in response to the COVID-19 outbreak by President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday, April 12, 2020.
“This gesture is in recognition of the pressure that the COVID-19 pandemic imposes on businesses, the responsibility imposed on the Authority to relief this burden on its customers as well as attaining the objective of the Federal Government’s Ease of Doing Business Policy at this trying period.”
The Authority further states that a compensation to terminal operators will be as spelt out in its April 8, 2020 letter to the terminal operators.
The authority will not tolerate any form of non-compliance with directive and not hesitate to apply the appropriate sanctions.
The NPA through the statement thanked all maritime stakeholders for their cooperation and understanding within the period.

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