Long Wait

March 06, 2008 (LBO) – Container transporters in Sri Lanka Thursday announced plans for a protest action and work stoppage that could disrupt the flow of cargo to and from Colombo port. The Joint Council of Transporters (JCT) said in a statement their members would commence a protest combined with work stoppage from March 10 to protest against lengthy delays in getting containers into the port.

“The long queues experienced during the last few months and other issues have compelled the trade to take such action,” the statement said.

“Although we have communicated to the relevant authorities of our intention we have not received any response from them.”

The JCT said they had told shippers, shipping agents, freight forwarders and business chambers of their planned industrial action.

Truck drivers have complained they have had to often wait for 12 hours to be given permission to enter the port.

Sunil Fernando of the Association of Container Transporters, a member of the JCT, said they had written to the SLPA chairman, director general of Customs and the naval area commander, but had not got any response.

He said the problem appears to be caused by strict secur