DPWA introduces Fremantle surcharge

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DP World Australia (DPWA) has announced that it will introduce a charge at its Fremantle Terminal as part of the basis for which access to the terminal is granted, for both road and rail operators, from 30 October 2017.

In a media release, Luke Westlake, General Manager – Operations, DP World Fremantle, stated that the charge reflects a “considerable” rise in property costs at Fremantle Terminal in the last five years.

“DPWA has incurred material increases in the costs of occupancy of more than 25 per cent, covering the cost of council rates, land tax and rent,” Westlake said. “DPWA avoided passing these costs onto the supply chain over this period, attempting to offset them through efficiency improvements. Despite, DPWA’s continued efforts, these material step changes in costs cannot be offset.”

He also cited investment DPWA has made in infrastructure to “keep pace” with industry expectations, and to handle greater peaks and troughs in cargo arrival patterns.

The surcharge will be $8.22 (excluding GST) per container and will apply to all full containers received or delivered to/from landside operators at Fremantle Terminal.

Full containers received or delivered via road will be charged to the road carrier through the 1-Stop Vehicle Booking System, while full containers received or delivered to rail will be charged to the rail operator as a separate item on the invoices produced.

“Ongoing access to Fremantle Terminal will be conditional on payment of the charges as per our conditions,” Westlake added.

DPWA noted in an additional statement that the surcharge is necessary to maintain productivity levels at the Terminal.

“This is a modest charge, which takes into consideration not only rising costs but the investment required to ensure our terminals continue to provide the highest levels of productivity,” the statement said. “This comes amidst the greatest levels of competition in Australian stevedoring history.”

Paul Zalai, Director of the Freight Trade Alliance (FTA) and Secretariat at the Australian Peak Shippers Association (APSA) advised that representatives of both the FTA and APSA will meet Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester MP in Canberra on 19 September in a bid for his help in stemming the tide of surcharges.