JNPT truckers strike in India

[Updated] May 13, 2018 - Transporters end strike at JNPT; new trucking system to be put on hold

Transporters hauling containers to and from Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) have called off their strike from Saturday night after local politicians wrested an assurance from the four new transporters selected by the port authority not to proceed with their work till the Supreme Court decides on a petition brought by the striking truckers’ associations.

“The strike was called off from Saturday night,” said Pravin Paithankar, President of the Maharashtra Heavy Vehicle and Inter-State Container Operators’ Association, one of the agitating associations. “The four transporters have given an assurance not to ply their vehicles or proceed with the work till the Supreme Court decides on the matter,” Paithankar said.

The assurance was given at a meeting called by Ganesh Naik from the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Bala Nandgaonkar from the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and Uday Dalvi from Shiv Sena, among other political party representatives, to end the strike. Representatives from the 11 transport associations spearheading the strike and those from the four new transporters were also present.

After the Bombay High Court, citing government policy, refused to intervene in a case brought by the association last year, it approached the Supreme Court for relief.

Separately, the four transporters have told JNPT in a communication that they will not be able to carry out their work till the issues are settled, said an executive with one of the four entities.

Local politicians and transporters, from both existing and newly selected ones, will also hold an emergency meeting with the port authorities on Tuesday to finalise an “amicable solution” to the issue, Paithankar said.

The strike that lasted four days affected road movement of containers. It would have paralysed port operations had it continued for long.

Paithankar said that they have suggested the formation of an expert committee to look into various aspects of DPD in its entirety.

Source: Hindu Business Line

May 11, 2018: Exporters and importers shipping their container cargo through Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) near Mumbai could face delays and extra costs, with transport operators taking their trucks off the roads from Wednesday.

The strikers want JNPT, India’s biggest container port, to scrap a new transport arrangement that was rolled out on May 1.

As many as 11 local transport associations comprising some 1,000 small transporters owning about 17,000 tractor trailers that haul containers to and from the port are agitating against the new transport solution finalised by JNPT to evacuate direct port delivery (DPD) containers from the port.

The truckers' strike is already affecting terminal productivity, based on gate move statistics. 

There is also no sign of negotiations or related talks to try to resolve the dispute.

BDP International is closely working with all stakeholders to ensure the impact to our customers' supply chains are mitigated as much as possible. We will continue to keep you apprised of updates as we receive them. In the meantime, please reach out to your local BDP with any questions or concerns

Source: Hindu Business Line, BDP International 

May 9, 2018 - JNPT truckers have gone on strike from today due to new logistics arrangements at the port that took effect on May 1st.

Harbor truck operators at Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) took vehicles off the roads Wednesday morning to pressure authorities to reconsider a regulated transport system rolled out May 1.

Local trade sources said that all truckers in the public harbor are out-of-service and that the abrupt stoppage has put a halt to container handling by road, which represents the majority of JNPT’s supply chains. The disruption and resulting congestion threaten hard-won productivity improvements through a spate of government ease-of-doing-business initiatives in the past few years.

“The (freight) movement to and from all terminals in the entire JNPT region has been ceased by the transporters,” third-party logistics provider Gateway Distriparks Ltd. stated in an advisory sent out to its customers.

APM Terminals Mumbai on Tuesday issued a trade notice warning customers of possible disruption to laden import and empty container handling in the event of a strike. Efforts to reach the port and terminals for updates regarding the truckers’ boycott on Wednesday were unsuccessful.

The truckers’ concern is centered on exclusive handling rights that JNPT awarded to four logistics companies for the transportation of direct port delivery (DPD) shipments. The drayage community fears the decision will render most vehicles idle and the new operation will create a monopolistic environment in the market.

The logistics contracts cover five busy hinterland points in Maharashtra and Gujarat, which combined is estimated to generate nearly 600,000 TEU of DPD bookings annually based on current market trends.

Source: American Journal of Transportation