Ricardo Valentine, General Manager of the Port Trailer Haulage Association
Haulage contractors who operate at Jamaica's ports have announced a hike in mounting and grounding fees with immediate effect.
The charges, which are associated with the loading and unloading of containers, will be increased from US$15 to US$25 both ways.
Ricardo Valentine, General Manager of the Port Trailer Haulage Association, said the increase is a result of the long delays being experienced at terminal facilities in Kingston, which is causing them to lose thousands of dollars in income.
"When they go to the terminal, for instance, to load a container, it takes some time before the container is positioned on load; and the longer it takes for it to load, the more they are burning up gas oil, idling and also man hours being used up," he pointed out.
He said the truckers have been absorbing the increased cost related to these delays for years but can no longer continue to do so, hence "they have to pass it on to the commercial trade."
Mounting and grounding fees were last increased in 2008, he said.
He has encouraged port haulers to use the new recommended trucking rates for container delivery islandwide which was issued in May this year.
Haulage contractors earlier this year withdrew their service in protest about the long time it takes to clear containers from the port.