| Code: 102904 |

TIN news:   Chittagong Port is experiencing acute container congestion mainly for slow delivery of cargoes amid Eid vacation.
As of yesterday a total of 37,776 TEUs (twenty feet equivalent units) of containers were stockpiled at the port yards exceeding its total capacity of storing 36,357 TEUs of containers, according to the traffic department of Chittagong Port Authority (CPA).
This congestion was worst, since 31,895 TEUs of import containers were laying at the port till yesterday while the designated spaces for such containers could accommodate only 25,981 TEUs.
Port officials said though the activities at the port were closed only on the Eid day, the imported containers could not be delivered timely in last few days as the government halted movement of cargo-laden vehicles on the highways to ensure smooth movement of passenger vehicles during the vacation.
Moreover, staffs of the clearing and forwarding (C&F) agents were still on Eid vacation, they said.
The total delivery of containers came down at only 862 TEUs in 24 hours till 8:00am on September 12, while 2,500 to 4,000 TEUs of containers usually get delivered from the port in a normal working day.
A total of 474 TEUs of containers could be delivered in 24 hours till 8:00am yesterday while documents for delivery of only 36 TEUs of containers were submitted till yesterday afternoon.
Berth operators were working hard to accommodate the unloaded import containers.
Fazley Ekram Chowdhury, president of Ship Handling and Terminal Operator Owners Association, said the congestion was common during Eid but the situation was still under control.
He, however, expressed concern as there are two more holidays till Saturday.
As of yesterday a total of 14 container-laden vessels were waiting at the outer anchorage to get berth at the port jetties.
Panama flagged Cala Pinguino arrived at the outer anchorage on September 11 and was waiting for the last five days to get berth.
CPA Member (Admin and Planning) Md Zafar Alam said the 16 private inland container depots (ICD) and the importers could not take away the imported cargoes.
Saying that this is a common phenomenon during the Eid, the CPA member said there was no increase of vessel stay time at the port jetties since the CPA managed to unload and store the import containers timely.
He, however, opined that to avoid such a situation in future, alternative ways need to be developed.
The port users, however, feared that if the congestion cannot be cleared within a few days the situation will be worsened.
Shahed Sarwar, executive director of K Line Bangladesh Ltd, said the vessel stay time was yet to increase

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