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KARACHI: President of United Business Group (UBG), Zubair Tufail has expressed concern over increasing container freight rate by shipping companies and said that it was making imports and exports expensive.

He said in just one year the shipping companies have increased per container freight rate from 2000 dollars per container to 6000 dollars.

Zubair Tufail said that due to increased freight charges by shipping companies, the cost of export and imports of products, particularly raw material, have also gone up which is having a direct impact on industrial and domestic consumers.

He urged the government to investigate threefold increase, in a year, in the freight rate of containers and take appropriate corrective measures.

Zubair Tufail invited attention of Prime Minister Imran Khan, Federal Minister for Ports and Shipping Syed Ali Zaidi and Advisor to the Prime Minister on Maritime Affairs Mahmood Maulvi toward unjustified increase in freight rate by the shipping companies and urged them find out the reasons for the increase.

He alleged that companies are harassing the exporters by creating artificial shortage of containers and now exporters are being harassed by continuous increase in freight charges.

He drew the special attention of Federal Minister for Ports and Shipping Syed Ali Zaidi towards the shipping companies and said that the exporters and importers were already worried about the increase in cargo handling costs and now the shipping companies are also frequently increasing charges. Major companies have formed a cartel, he added.

“We support all the positive steps taken by the government and have not committed any negligence in discharging our national and professional duties,” he said. The government should act on our request immediately so that it does not face any difficulties, he added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021