The Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) has signed an agreement with its stakeholders committing both parties to work effectively around the clock in a bid to increase the port’s competitiveness and efficiency.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed yesterday in Dar es Salaam is meant to implement the Standard Operating Procedures (SPOs) and the 24/7 work arrangement. The move is part of the implementation of the government initiative — Big Results Now (BRN).
“This commitment now means that all stakeholders shall operate 24 hours throughout the year,” said TPA acting director general, Madeni Kipande.
However, even as stakeholders signed the document, they still held reservations over the failure by the government to consider their recommendations towards improving the document before yesterday’s event.
Shortly before signing the document, Tanzania Freight Forwarders Association (Taffa) president Steven Ngatunga complained that the views that stakeholders gave last month on improving the document were yet to be included.
“We held a stakeholders’ meeting last month. We came up with recommendations and formed a committee that could incorporate them by mid-last month, but nothing has been done. Today, we’ve been called to sign the document which may mean the commitment to hang ourselves,” Mr Ngatunga noted with concern.
He mentioned one of the recommendations as that which requires every party working with the port to be fined for making delays in transaction. “The document does not say that each institution should be subjected to a fine. Only players from the private sector would be fined leaving out key government institutions that are part and parcel for an efficient running of the port. We need every party that belongs to the chain of service to be included,” he said.
Those who signed the MoU yesterday included Taffa, Tanzania Shipping Agency Association (Tasaa), Tanzania Trucks Owners Association (Tatoa), Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA), Tanzania International Container Terminal Services (Ticts) and Weights and Measures Agency (WMA).