No more room for refrigerated containers in PPA storage areas, foreign shipping lines told

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) has advised foreign shipping lines that it will no longer accept refrigerated containers until Jan. 1 due to congestion in all its storage areas.

PPA General Manager Jay Santiago said that based on their monitoring last week, the PPA's storage areas reached 110 percent utilization rate for refrigerated containers last week.

"So we already advised foreign shipping lines that we will no longer accept refrigerated containers from Dec. 25 to Jan. 1. in our bid to free up some space," said Santiago.

He said that in order to free up some space, they already removed regular containers that were already cleared by the Bureau of Customs.

The BOC clearance is needed before a shipment is allowed to be transported out of the storage areas in order to make sure that all taxes and documentary requirements are complied with.

Normally, the clearance period is around five days after the shipments are unloaded from the ships.

But based on the reports received by the PPA, some of the refrigerated containers stay in the storage areas for weeks and even months.

Some of the storage areas for regular containers, according to Santiago, were already installed with generator set and were temporarily converted to accommodate refrigerated containers.