Djibouti ups port service quality

New system promises cheaper, more efficient and professional service

The Djibouti Ports and Free Zones Authority (DPFZA) has introduced a harmonized tariff for Djiboutian freight forwarders as of January 1.


The new tariff, divided into four sectors and six sub sectors of fixed priced, aims to further modernize the port, according to Capital’s sources in Djibouti. Previously, the payment was dependent on foreign freight forwarding companies.
Ethiopian freight forwarders appreciate the new system, introduced by the Djiboutian government.
“The price was variable for every company and was exaggerated and highly inflated,” a freight forwarder in Ethiopia told Capital. DPFZA hope the new tariffs will bring transparency in invoicing, as well as efficiency and competitiveness.
It is said that the new tariffs are more formalized and reduce costs for Ethiopian users.
On tariffs for the containerized cargo sector, Djiboutian forwarding companies’ service charge is fixed at USD 60 and USD 80 for 20 feet and 40 feet containers, respectively.
Transport charges for full cargo and return of empty containers are also divided into six categories, based on the distances travelled and loading capacity of containers. The maximum cost of transport is USD 130 and the minimum of USD 40 depending on distance and type of container used.
Labor costs have also been standardized with limits on tariffs under the new system. Stuffing and un-stuffing for a 20 feet container costs USD 35 and USD 75 for 40 feet containers.
The system also outlines fixed tariffs for non-containerized cargo. Service charge for non-containerized cargo is USD 1.50 per freight ton for general cargo, solid bulk and liquid bulk and USD 0.75 per freight ton for vehicle.  For livestock, the maximum service charge allowed is USD 1 per head. The authority also announced that a disbursement commission of 5 percent will be applicable.
To further modernizing and reform servicing processes, the authority has reduced the number of forwarding companies from over 300 to 77 well equipped and well skilled freight forwarders. This constitutes an important step toward the professionalization of private port operators.
In the past decade DPFZA has introduced a series of reforms and measures to add value in the maritime sector and establish the Djiboutian corridor as competitive and effective. The country is also undertaking massive infrastructural expansion to accommodate the fast growing logistics service in the region. Djibouti remains a major corridor for Ethiopian import-export.