The decision of Adani Ports and SEZ Ltd (APSEZ), which operates Mundra Port in Gujarat, not to handle containerised cargo originating from Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan from November 15 would increase domestic logistics costs for the export sector, according to exporters. Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) Vice Chairman Khalid Khan said due to this decision, shipments coming to Mundra Port in Gujarat would shift to JNPT, Mumbai and it would increase congestion.
“The move will increase freight cost by 20-25 per cent. Congestion at JNPT will also increase. We will urge the commerce and shipping ministries to look into the matter to find a solution,” Khan said.
FIEO Director General Ajay Sahai also said the organisation is watching the development as the restrictions will apply from November 15.
“We expect the cargo from Adani administered ports will move to other ports. This will lead to higher domestic freight particularly for exports from North India and Western India, other than areas close to Mumbai.
“It is too early to gauge its impact on our trade with these countries. What will be its impact on the availability of ships to Iran, overseas freight etc are issues, which have started bothering trade,” he said.
After understanding and evaluating the development, they would approach the government on this, he added.
Sharing similar views, founder chairman of Technocraft Industries India Sharad Kumar Saraf said it is a “negative” step.
“Adani port should have got customs department to revamp and tighten the inspection of cargo to prevent drugs import. We have friendly relations with Iran and need to establish good relations with the new Af Govt. They will surely see this step as an unfavourable act,” Saraf said.
The genuine imports from these countries will suffer, as imports to other ports will become more expensive, he added.
The decision by Adani Ports and SEZ Ltd (APSEZ) came nearly a month after the seizure of 2,988 kg of heroin at Mundra Port located in the Kutch district of Gujarat.
In a “trade advisory”, the company has said the decision applies to all terminals operated by APSEZ across India.
On September 13, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) had detained two containers that had arrived at Mundra Port from Kandahar in Afghanistan via Bandar Abbas port of Iran.
Source: India Shipping News