Importers and Exporters, as well as Freight Forwarders at the Tema Port, fears Ghana could be losing its business-friendly status, as a result of unfair treatment from shipping line, Maersk for some weeks now.
According to them, the firm has blocked businesses of more than 100 shipping agents, denying them access to clear their goods.
The situation has triggered losses due to demurrage and rent charges from the port authority. Management of the Ghana Institute of Freight forwarders and the Ghana Shippers Authority has been notified by this development, but all efforts to get it resolved has proven unsuccessful. Importers and
A Freight Forwarder, Jacob Agyemang who spoke to Joy Business explained that Maersk has blacklisted and reported him to all his clients to halt business transactions with him and rather consider another option. This is because he has an outstanding debt to settle with the shipping line though there is no record to indicate that all the debt attributed to him is genuine.
“They are charging me for a consignment that is going to a port in Nigeria which I have no knowledge of, I don’t know anything about the consignment and neither have I been contacted on any such business.
I have sent a mail requesting for the proper thing to be done for the past two weeks and the shipping line is not responding to my query. I have incurred a lot of debt from this error and my clients are waiting for me to clear their goods”, he pointed out.
“At the same time, they are notifying all my clients in Europe and America to stop doing business with me, a situation I can’t comprehend” he expressed worry.
President of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders, Eddie Akrong, told Joy Business his outfit has requested Maersk to stop the unlawful treatment meted out to Ghanaian exporters, but to no avail.
“We have written to and engaged the Ghana Shipping Authority to call the shipping line to order because these kinds of treatment is only here in Ghana. And we notified Maersk to allow our people continue with their business, whilst they investigate the error.”
“We have been meeting with other stakeholders and our authorities and will soon announce our next line of action” he said.
Meanwhile, an official of Maersk Ghana Limited, the local agents of Maersk Shipping who spoke on condition of anonymity said the company is working around the clock to resolve the matter.