COLOMBO Port volumes fell at Jaya Container Terminal (JCT) as trade went to rivals because of delays and the addition of a new tariff, reported Colombo's Sunday Times.
The port recorded a drop of 2.2 per cent in volume for the first eight months of this year amounting to a loss of 106,760 TEU, said the report.
The decline was led by domestic volumes that fell 10.39 per cent year on year on the back of Sri Lanka's economic woes and a drop of 0.8 per cent in transshipment volumes, a factor of the global slowdown.
The general slowdown is attributed to the fall in consumption in Western Europe and the US coupled with continuing lockdowns and closures in China.
This is said to be causing a drop in container volumes and dramatic drops in spot freight rates across all major shipping lines on these trades, South Asia Gateway Terminal (SAGT) CEO Romesh David said.
The JCT operations were hardest hit with volumes dropping 144,778 TEU in the first eight months that was a significant loss of 9.8 per cent. August alone posted a drop of 21.4 per cent in volume, a loss of 42,441 TEU.
SAGT also recorded a drop in cumulative volumes for the first eight months at 12,407 TEU that indicated a one per cent drop. However, August recorded a 10.5 per cent increase in volumes gaining by 15,010 TEU.
Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT) recorded an increase of 2.9 per cent for August gaining by 7,300 TEU hitting a total volume of 261,557 TEU. The terminal also recorded an increase in the first eight months as well of 2.4 per cent in volumes gaining by 50,425 TEU.
Authorities are said to have changed the tariff at the JCT increasing it to the same level as that of the other two terminals. This resulted in a number of vessels shifting to the other two terminals that would provide an improved service and better facilities.