Panama keeps low profile
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has decided to postpone the planned price increases on canal transit fees which were due to come into effect in mid-April.
This decision was influenced by a joint letter sent by the associations International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Asian Shipowners’ Association (ASA), and European Community Shipowners’ Association (ECSA). All organisations expressed their concerns over the speed of price rises that were expected to begin from 15 April 2021.
The proposed changes representing a minimum cost increase per transit reservation of USD 20,000 (up 57%) and a maximum cost increase of USD 58,500 (up 167%) will now start on 1 June 2021.
In the letter, it was said that the “significant increase” of the fees at this date simply "was at too short a notice for the maritime industry and canal users to be able to adjust". ACP has linked the higher fees to changing supply and demand conditions for the service it offers.
The Panama Canal is one of the world’s busiest shipping routes; nearly 14,000 transits were made last year. (cd)