Cargo Crisis

Nov 06, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lankan port authorities have agreed to long-standing demands of truckers to open more entrance gates, reduce security checks and provide toilets after a sudden strike disrupted cargo flows through Colombo port. Port officials said some of the restrictions such as checks on cargo and closure of entrance gates had been imposed to improve security during the island’s 30-year ethnic war which ended in May 2009. The Sri Lanka Ports Authority said in a statement private prime mover vehicle drivers launched a strike after the computer system at Customs malfunctioned.

The glitch forced the customers to fall back on manual systems which worsened existing delays for truckers to get in and out of the port.

Port activities came back to normal Saturday after being disrupted for a day, the SLPA said.

It said the authorities agreed to open more entrance gates to the port for truckers, stop checks by the navy on export cargo, deploy more staff at gates to improve efficiency and provide toilets for drivers inside the port.