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Dollar scarcity: Terminal operators lament, may increase charges

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A man carries Nigerian naira banknotes

Segun Oladipupo

As scarcity of dollars continues in the country, there are fears that terminal operators may increase their charges as they have to source for dollars in the black market.

In an exclusive chat with our correspondent, a top Manager  in one of the terminals in Tincan revealed that as Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) refused to collect Naira equipment of their terminal dues, they are forced to source dollars from the black market.

Recall that terminal iperators pay terminal charges, throughput charges,among others to the port landlord, NPA in dollars.

Speaking under anonymity, the source said that all pleas to NPA to pay the equivalent of the fee in Nigerian currency was rejected.

According to him, the operators had no choice but to patronise the black market operators to source for the dollars to pay up the charges as NPA would not condone delay in payment of the charges.

He stressed that the cost of getting the dollars in black markets is always exorbitant and at almost double of what it should be at the official rate.

Lamenting the development, our source said that it would definitely affect salaries of staff even as he added that getting more equipment for efficient service delivery would also be affected.

“There is no way charges would not be reviewed with what is going on right now in the country because one cannot be doing business at a loss.

“As we speak, nothing concerns NPA, all they want is their charges paid as at when due without recourse to what we are passing through to get the dollars with which we pay the royalty we pay to them”

He appealed to  the government to quickly intervene in the matter before things  go out of hands.

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