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January 21, 2015

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EMS allowed to collect containers

CHINA Post Express Mail Service yesterday collected 18 of the 287 shipping containers that have been sitting at the Waigaoqiao port for several months.

“EMS will work overtime to deliver the parcels as soon as possible,” Zhou Ying, the customer service supervisor at EMS, told Shanghai Daily.

A further 102 containers will be collected today and the rest by Friday, the company said.

The Shanghai International Port Group said in a statement yesterday that it had acted “in the interests of the public” in allowing the courier firm to take the containers.

EMS has also been urged to settle a bill for more than 8 million yuan (US$1.3 million) in unpaid fees.

A report on Shanghai Television said the total comprised 2 million yuan in demurrage fees and 6 million owed to Japanese shipping company “K” Line, which shipped the containers.

“The group has asked EMS to issue a guarantee of payment to cover the charges,” the port said in a statement yesterday.

A total of 301 containers sent to EMS by Japan Post arrived at Waigaoqiao between October 24 and November 29. EMS then asked another courier company to handle their processing, the statement said.

EMS, however, failed to take away the containers, and acted only after being contacted by the port operator about the outstanding fees, it said.

“EMS ... should pay the demurrage fees as it failed to take the containers as normal,” the statement said.

The charges are “totally reasonable and legal,” it said.

But EMS blamed the delay on Shanghai Customs, which it said launched an investigation into its supervision mode, which meant its usual clearance procedure was halted until mid-December.

Shanghai Customs denied the claims made by EMS.

“Customs launched an inspection into the supervision mode of an earlier batch of 80 containers, but had no business with the delayed containers from Japan,” Ma Xiaohua, deputy director of the post supervision department told a press conference yesterday.

Customs received an application from EMS to take away 301 containers on December 15 and gave the green light the same day, it said.

EMS, however, took away only 14 containers, leaving 287 at the port, Customs said.


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