A recent meeting of Port officials in Owendo, Gabon finalised details of precautions to be taken in an attempt to counter potential port congestion in Gabon resulting from the expected increase of maritime traffic due to the preparations of the soon to be hosted Africa Cup of Nations.
Gabon has spent more than 500 million Dollars as it prepares for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations which the it is co-hosting with its neighbour, Equatorial Guinea.
Gabon is working around the clock to finish preparations before the kickoff on 21st January 2012. Although the main stadium has been completed Gabon remains hard at work preparing infrastructure to host the games.
It is anticipated that the already congested port will see increased imports of cars, wheat, malt, bitumen, frozen chicken, fish etc during the games and has, with immediate effect, granted cargoes related to the games priority over all other traffic.
More specifically, the ports’ two main berths will give priority to Ro-Ro vessels carrying goods related to the tournament.
Vessels carrying cargoes such as cement, iron, gypsum or other bulk cargoes will be obliged to discharge on the roads.
As can be imagined these actions will impact shippers and carriers in many ways. Port congestion is likely to rise which may in turn give rise to cargo claims associated with time sensitive cargoes.
Discharging in unfamiliar conditions may also give rise to claims where there may be inadequate port infrastructure.
Any member who regularly calls to Gabon and more specifically is scheduled to call to Gabon during the games is advised to contact their local agent in Gabon for the latest information and guidance.
The games are scheduled to take place between 21st January 2012 ~ 12th February 2012.
Source of Information:
UK P&I Club