Shippers' Association Lagos State, SALS, has said that the ongoing road construction and provision of truck parks will not solve the traffic gridlock in and around the port town of Apapa.
SALS noted that government’s action was like scratching the surface as they neglected the major cause of the traffic.
The Association attributed the cause of the gridlock to the refusal of shipping lines to take back empty containers.
Speaking with Vanguard Maritime Report, President, of the Association, Jonathan Nicol, said the traffic situation will be solved when the shipping lines begin to take back their empty containers.
He stated: “Construction of these roads will not solve the problem. They have not really got to the cause of the traffic and until they have got that, they have not done anything. They should go and find out why they have not taken delivery of containers.
“If you like get 200 truck parks, as long as the shipping lines refuse to take their containers, it will not work. If you do not evacuate empty containers, you will still have the problem.”
On Truck Transit Parks, TTP, Nicol said that the only way it can work as well as reduce cost, is to make provision for the empty containers to be discharged at the port terminals.
He added that as long as the trucks continue to pay demurrage on the empty containers they are carrying, they will continue to avoid making use of the transit parks.
“Trucks don’t just lie on the road; they have empty containers to discharge at the terminals where they loaded from so that the container deposit can stop. You cannot just put trucks in the transit parks with empty containers on top. Who pays the demurrage?
“The only way the truck transit park will work is as soon as they take the empty containers to the terminals they are received and there will be no more demurrage, or they should abolish container deposit”, he concluded.