Companies deplore the new bout of social fever at the port of Marseille Fos – Le Journal des Entreprises

On the eve of the Constitutional Council’s decision on the legality of the pension reform bill, companies in the port of Marseille Fos are worried. In question: the blocking by the demonstrators of the headquarters of the port, located place de la Joliette in Marseille, as well as of the door 2C of the Grand Port maritime of Marseille. Condemned for a month by the CGT, this gate provides access to Ro-Ro terminals to the Maghreb.

25% less traffic compared to last year

“Companies are in danger. They feel abandoned by the government and by the port authorities”, denounce Stéphane Salvetat and Delphine Chouin, re-elected on April 7 as co-presidents of the Marseille-Fos freight forwarders’ union after the general assembly. annual. “The situation is particularly worrying for refrigerated and dangerous goods and those subject to phytosanitary and veterinary controls. Export goods are diverted to Barcelona and Genoa. On imports, shippers must pay demurrage and Parking Fee.”

The MedEurope container terminal is completely paralyzed, as are the Eurofos and Seayard terminals in Fos-sur-Mer. “We are losing between 800 and 1,000 TEU containers per week,” laments terminal manager Hugues Houzé in L’Aulnoit. To compensate for the stoppage during the day, the terminal remains open at night to allow the containers to be evacuated. However, road hauliers, given the congestion, are reluctant to remove the boxes. In the first quarter, the Seayard terminal lost 25% of traffic compared to the same period of 2022.

Hassle for freight forwarders, additional costs for shippers

When the goods are diverted to another port or blocked on the Marseille quays, the shipper bears the additional costs. He must pay the additional time of possession (demurrage) and parking of the container, the price of which varies from 35 to 90 euros per day for a dry container and 150 euros per day for a refrigerated box. “Goods arrive in Antwerp and Rotterdam and come back down by truck. We have fewer and fewer volumes. The port terminals are congested”, denounces Emilie Zamora, general manager of the freight forwarder Martico, leading a team of 12 people.

Stephan Brousse, deputy general manager of Brousse Vergez, a trader in dried and canned fruits, stepped up to the plate during the reform of the autonomous ports. Ten years later, he is much more temperate: “We are now used to it. It’s go-slows. The goods leave the port two days late and we pay 200 to 300 euros in demurrage per container, but we have to put things into perspective in view of last year’s surge in freight rates”. On the other hand, the passenger transport activity was not affected by the social conflict either on the Maghreb lines or on the maritime service to Corsica.

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