Delaying of Port projects may lose geographical advantages - CASA
During the last two years while attending and assisting in solving
many operational/financial issues of our membership, mainly with Sri
Lanka Ports Authority and Sri Lanka Customs, we focused to project CASA
as a friendly and a professional association.
Elected CASA office-bearers
Today our rapport is excellent with almost all the organizations and
associations coming under ports and shipping in the Government and
private sector, said CASA Chairman Capt. Ajith Pieris at the CASA annual
The Colombo South Harbour Project finally took off the ground, but
immediately met with a crisis, as the awarding of the tender for
Terminal Construction was cancelled at the last minute.
But the Minister, Ministry and Port Officials, assured the industry
that there will be no delay due to this action, as they managed to
de-link the construction of the Break Water and the Terminal.
We are made to understand that the progress of Break Water
construction is good and on schedule. We hope that the Terminal tender
will also be awarded in time, for the benefit of the shipping industry
and the economy of the country and there will not be any last minute
cancellation this time, he said.
The industry’s main concern is that we may lose the geographical
advantage to the neighbouring ports if our port development projects to
cater for today’s and tomorrow’s needs are delayed, he said. We were
also informed about the progress of the Hambantota Port Development, and
happy to hear that the first phase will be completed by the third
quarter of 2010.
The construction of the port in Oluvil has just commenced but we feel
the Government and SLPA have to seriously look at developing the port in
KKS on priority basis as the present facilities available are very
primitive and inadequate to handle the ships’ efficiently.
The new Galle harbour project too is said to commence in the near
future, Capt. Pieris said.
CASA recommends to the Minister and SLPA that while it focuses on
developing facilities and increasing productivity in handling
containers, it should also seriously look at improving facilities for
Break Bulk vessels, car carriers and ships calling for bunker and
In the past, SLPA and CASA members have lost revenue in the mentioned
areas of business due to lack of facilities in Sri Lankan Ports.
Rightly or wrongly in early 1990s, the Sri Lankan Authorities allowed
40 per cent equity of a shipping agency company to be held by the
‘foreign principal’. Since then 12 members out of 114 in CASA, have
formed J/V Companies, Chairman said.
The local shipping agency companies have invested in hotels,
plantations, hospitals, training institutions etc thus contributing to
the Sri Lanka economy immensely. But we cannot say the same with regard
to Companies with foreign partnerships.
The CASA members who are engaged in recruiting seafarers are
responsible in securing further USD 100 million in foreign exchange to
our country through the earnings of the seafarers serving on foreign
From time to time, a few interested parties have approached the
Ministry/ BOI to convince them to increase the existing 40 per cent
equity to foreign Companies to 100 per cent, he said. Therefore, we do
not see any additional involvement in the equity of an Agency Company by
a foreign party.
In other areas of maritime industry where you require massive
investments such as for Terminal construction and building of Dock
facilities etc, we have no objection to grant high percentages of
equity, in those Companies.
Our recommendation is the same as the present government policies
where the local industry and the local businessmen are protected while
developing the economy of Sri Lanka, he said.
ILO confab to ensure decent work standards for seafarers
The International Labour Organisation in collaboration with the Sri
Lankan Government is organising a workshop in August 6-8 at the Maitland
State Room, Mount Lavinia Hotel, for the promotion of the MLC and
possible ratification ensuring decent work standards for all seafarers.
The 94th session of the International Labour Conference (February
2006) adopted the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 consolidating over 65
international maritime labour instruments adopted since 1920. This was
the culmination of over five years of preparatory work which had started
with the “Geneva Accord”, a historic decision of the ILO’s Joint
Maritime Commission in 2001.
The Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 aims at establishing a
continuous “compliance awareness” at every stage from the national
system of protection up to the international system. Application within
National Laws is necessary to ensure a global system for improved and
enforceable conditions for decent work in the Maritime Sector.
SLFFA elects executive committee
The new Executive Committee of the Sri Lanka Freight Forwarders
Association was appointed at the 27th Annual General Meeting held
The Minister of Export Development and International Trade, Prof. G.L.
Peiris, was the Chief Guest. The AGM was followed by an award ceremony
of the Academy of International Trade and Transport (AITT), the training
arm of SLFFA.
Group Director of Hayleys Advantis, the Hayleys Groups’,
Transportation and Logistics arm, Ruwan Waidyaratne assumed the role of
SLFFA Chairman. He took over office from Niral Kadawatharatchie,
President/Chief Executive Officer of Freight Links International after a
successful term of two years.
SLFFA was established in 1981, with the objective of bringing all
freight forwarders under one umbrella and with a view of
institutionalizing and professionalizing the trade.
Today the Government, relevant Government agencies and the trade have
recognized the SLFFA as the apex body representing the industry. It
currently has over 92 leading freight forwarding companies in its
SLFFA is a member of the regional freight forwarding body, Federation
of Asia Pacific Air Cargo Associations (FAPAA) and the International
Freight Forwarding body FIATA.
The incumbent Chairman expressed that the year ahead would be a
challenging one with the tough global economic conditions. However, he
expressed that the new Executive Committee is optimistic in facing the
In particular, he said that the new Committee shall endeavour to
develop further, the services that the Association provides to the
members, and strive hard to enhance SLFFA’s standing within the freight
New entrant to bunkering operations
“CSC Kandia (Pvt) Ltd, (pending BOI approval), is a joint venture
company between Ceylon Shipping Corporation Ltd (CSC) and Ariston Oil
and Shipping (Pvt) Ltd, was awarded licence by The Ministry of Petroleum
and Petroleum Resources Development to carry out bunkering operations in
According to the Chairman of the Ceylon Shipping Corporation Ltd, Y.
L.S. Hameed, the Licence which came into effect from July 15, will
permit CSC Kandia (Pvt) Ltd, to import, store, distribute and supply
petroleum fuel to ships entering Sri Lankan waters.
“The awarding of bunkering license is a very important milestone in
an ambitious journey embarked upon by the new management team appointed
by the Minister of Ports and Aviation Chamal Rajapaksa with a view to
bringing back the past glory of the Ceylon Shipping Corporation Ltd says
the Executive Director Mayantha Dissanayake.
“We have been given a clear mandate to revitalize CSC and with the
blessings of the Minister, we continue to seek innovate methods for
further improving our business.
The team headed by Hameed and myself have found an ideal partner for
this operation, Ariston Oil and Shipping (Pvt) Ltd which had given the
backing to their parent company who has 45 years of experience and
expertise in the oil and shipping industry.
These efforts are on line with the vision of the President, Mahinda
Rajapaksa, to develop the maritime industry in Sri Lanka to the highest
international standards using country’s key advantage, he said.
“The direct involvement of the Chairman of Ariston Oil and Shipping (Pvt)
Ltd Pyrros Vardinoyannis hails from a well reputed Greek family with a
long maritime business history established by his late father.