From all indications, frontline bonded terminal, Duncan Bonded Terminal has stepped up preparations to delve into the handling of imported vehicles.
Disclosing this to Shipping Position Daily, last week in Lagos, the General Manager of the terminal, Alhaji Haruna Omolajomo, said that the decision is part of strategies to diversify and give its numerous customers the satisfaction, even as he said that the company is trying to get the necessary logistics ready before they kick start.
Omolajomo, who said that the traditional work of the terminal is to handle imports, also said that Duncan is planning to convert the terminal into holding bay for shipping companies.
“Here we handle imports, they are the traditional jobs that we do here are Duncan Bonded terminal, when you talk of imports we mean containerized goods; that is what we majorly do here. But because of these challenges that we are having now, the imports are not flowing because of one reason or the other. Based on that, we want to diversify to the aspect of having export, we are planning on having more export containers in the terminal. We are also planning on making this terminal to serve as a holding bay for some shipping companies”, he explained.
“On the issue of handling vehicles in this terminal, we had that plan, we are already making efforts towards that we have the plans but it is still in the pipeline because it has not been concluded, when we conclude we can talk about that. I said that it is in pipeline because we have someone in mind that has shown interest in the Roll-On Roll-Off (RORO) in this terminal, but for now we are still discussing with the necessary people to make it a success, that is why I said it is still in pipeline”, he added.
Explaining further he hinted that there are some requirements that have to be put in place before you can be a RORO terminal.
He also decried low turnout of activities in the terminal, and added that the company has had to downsize and that the terminal has not been able to pay the staff for the past 16 months.
“Before you can be a RORO terminal you have to get the necessary approval from the required quarters, you have to get the permit from customs, shipping companies and you must have a terminal too that are ready to run the business with you too. Running of this terminal is on the high side because there is low patronage”, he lamented.
“We are still finding it difficult to pay salaries, in this terminal as I am talking to you now, we owe several months salary ; we owe more than 16 months because we don’t have businesses to do. We also discovered that our major traditional role is stemming of vessels and imports by individuals and the patronages are very low. So these are the major challenges and the roads too are not helping matters” he concluded.