Freight forwarders in the dark about where to send goods in stricter Covid-19 shutdown

Jerry Choong
FMFF president Alvin Chua said the government has been vague about the coordination of the transportation. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, March 29 — Freight forwarding industry players are unclear where their cargo may be delivered under the movement control order (MCO).

Malaysiakini reported Federation of Malaysian Freight Forwarders (FMFF) president Alvin Chua as saying their customers, importers and manufacturers have been asking if their factories may be opened to receive the goods.

“I told them I have no answer for that. There was a rush at Port Klang which saw trucks queueing up to clear the cargo for up to four kilometres,” he said.

Chua was referring to the greenlight given by the Transportation Ministry on Thursday to tens of thousands of non-essential cargo goods for transport out of Port Klang, the Penang Port and Pasir Gudang port in Johor from Friday until today (March 27 to 29) which were affected by the movement control order (MCO).

He added the government has been vague about the coordination of the transportation, and that the Cabinet should have made a decision on allowing manufacturers to receive their goods as well.

“The International Trade and Industry Ministry needs to follow up on the matter, and allow manufacturers to operate for the purpose of receiving the cargo from ports until March 29.

“Approximately 70 per cent of cargo at the port are non-essential goods, comprising building material, chemicals and steel bars,” Chua said, adding that non-essential services manufacturers would face action by the police should they defy the MCO.

The FMFF president also expressed his worry that non-essential goods stuck at the container ports and air freight at airports are stacking up, and therefore should also be permitted clearance.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong was earlier reported as saying that the three shipping ports have neared 100 per cent capacity, after the transfer of goods to storage warehouses was ceased, prior to being sent to their final destinations.

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