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Containers pile up at Indian ports for want of slots

Containers pile up at Indian ports for want of slots

Mumbai: Indian containers meant for European destinations have piled up at Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNPT) and Tuticorin, thanks to the decision of the world's largest container line, Maersk and French box carrier CMA CGM, to curtail calls of their Europe-bound vessels at Indian ports.
"There are some 30,000-odd boxes lying around at Indian ports at the moment, especially in the arc between JNPT on the west coast and Tuticorin port on the east; and the lines have not been able to clear this backlog," said K. Venkatesh, Vice-President of the Western India Shippers' Association (WISA).
"The situation could get worse in coming days, since India ships out between 10,000 and 12,000 teu every week. At this rate, the backlog could take up to three weeks to clear. The problem is causing grave concern to the country's exporters and western apparel manufacturers."
In recent months, the rates between India and Europe have increased sharply, from $900-1,000 to $2,800-3,000 per teu. The main reason for the present crisis is the shortage of slots in Europe-bound containers vessels.  [07/04/10]

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