KARACHI: Non-intrusive Examination (NIE) i.e. scanning of imported cargo is off at MCC Port Qasim since August 15, 2019 causing severe congestion on the port and delayed clearance of imported goods.
The NIE scanner turned off due to poor drainage system, which resulted in seepage of rain water. Qasim International Container Terminal (QICT) operator DP World informed that the scanner would take around three months to come back online.
Meanwhile, Collector Port Qasim Mumtaz Khoso has issued stern directives that no container would be moved to off-dock terminals including Pak Shaheen and MTO without examination, and examination of containers would only be conducted at QICT. It may be mentioned here that MTO is the only off-dock terminal that has deposited a surety of $1.0 million with the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
It may be mentioned here that in past staff of MTO and Pak Shaheen were found involved in replacement of containerized cargo.
Troubled by delayed clearance of consignments, the importers have said that they would not pay any demurrage and detention charges, as they were only incurring losses. DP World has also expressed its intention to waive the demurrage and detention charges.
However, the shipping lines are charging extra from the importers and are in no mood to waive detention charges.
Collector Preventive Dr. Fareed Iqbal Qureshi has also issued directives to examine the baggage consignments at QICT before shifting the same to off-dock terminals.
It is pertinent to mention that the inter-port movement of goods to off-dock terminals falling under the jurisdiction of MCC East, MCC West, MCC Port Qasim and MCC Preventive are moved after scanning from the said scanner. On average around 2,000 containers/month are shifted to off-dock terminals including NLC, AICT, BOML, MTO and Pak Shaheen etc. Besides, approximately 2,000 containers of HC imported at QICT are scanned.
Scanners at MCC East and MCC West are operational, but due to poor infrastructure maintenance, containerized cargo scanner at QICT is dysfunctional.
The authorities have issued instructions to M/s DP World for immediate repair or making any standby arrangement.
It is pertinent to mention that scanners of Fast and West t’onc_torate ate working. However, due to poor infrastructure maintenance containenied ..ergo scanner at QICT is dysfunctional.
An official said that about one and a half year ago, QICT had approached Chief Collector Appraisement South seeking their recommendations, as the QICT planned to install a new scanner at the terminal. However, the then Chief Collector did not respond to the QICT query.
Chief Collector office informed that the QICT query was pending, but soon after the new Chief Collector assumed the office, a detailed response was given to QICT recently.