SILA Global Industry News 14/05/21


Patrick Terminal Sydney – MUA Industrial Action – Sydney Autostrad

Notice has been received that there will be Protected Industrial Action at Patrick Terminal – Sydney Autostrad as per below:

A ban on overtime at Port Botany from 6am Thursday 20th May 2021 for 14 days
A ban on working of shift extensions at Port Botany from 6am Thursday 20th May 2021 for 14 days.

Patrick Terminals is committed to minimising the impact on customers and the supply chain.

Ocean freight pricing – current trends set to continue

After a period of stability, carriers are preparing to roll out new General Rate Increases (GRI’s) – expected to come into effect 1st June. Maritime consultant Drewry has recently reported that it expects the “extreme freight rates” on the transpacific and Asia-Europe trades “will last for at least another three to five months”. It added: “There is also a phenomenon of contagion, where extreme freight rates spread from trade route to trade route. This happened last year, when extreme rates on the transpacific spot market were followed by extreme rates on Asia-Europe. There is strong evidence that the transatlantic trade spot market is next in line.

The full article, including FBX readings can be found here

Container Chain Notification Fee Increases

We have been advised that DP World Logistics Parks 1 & 2 as well as MCS Cooks have reviewed and will be increasing their Empty Container Return Notification Fee - also known as the Container Chain booking fee. The charge increases are substantial, at approx. 35% and unfortunately we expect that more depots will follow this lead and increase their fees accordingly. The revised fees will be effective 1st June 2021 and will continue to be processed via the Container Chain booking system. We will continue to keep you informed as other depots adjust their fees.

Changes to Rail Tagging Process at Hutchison Terminal

Due to new processes implemented at Hutchison Terminal, all containers destined for Newcastle via Rail Services must have the tagging functions completed by the Rail operator. There is no longer the option for forwarders or customers to process their own rail tags and releases directly. This will incur additional rail tagging charges per container and will be included in SILA’s ancillary charges accordingly. If you require further information please contact your SILA representative.

Customs & Trade: Federal Budget 2021-22

Andrew Hudson from Rigby Cooke has reviewed the 2021-22 Federal Budget and has identified the impact on Customs, Trade and Transport industry, including:

Continued funding of $118.2million to provide the International Freight Assistance Mechanism until the end of September 2021.
$198.2 million over four years to assist export diversification and growth
Additional funding of $37.4 million over three years to provide ongoing support to “modernise”the Australian trade system.
Click to read the full article here

Rate Increase Australia/NZ to South East Asia to Indian sub-continent, Middle East Gulf region Red Sea regions.

We have advised notice from ANL that for the period of 22nd May – end of June 2021 there will be a Cost Recovery Increase to rates from Australia & New Zealand to all India Sub-Continent, & Gulf region & Red Sea regions.
According to ANL representatives “The shipping industry globally is facing a number of unprecedented issues such as:

Unprecedented demand and subsequent shortage of containers globally
Vessel charter rates at close to record highs and also a shortage of vessels in the charter market
Serious port congestion around the globe “

As a consequence ANL will be implementing a Cost Recovery program with a rate increase for cost recovery of USD700/TEU from Australia and New Zealand to all ISC & Gulf region & Red Sea effective 22nd May across all customers until end of June 2021. We are reviewing Q3 rates and will advise further in due course.

If you have any questions regarding any of the above, please contact your local SILA representative.

Thanks & kind regards

SILA Customer Service

Khapra Beetle Notice


Khapra Beetle Notice

Dear Clients,
We wish to advise you that the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) has released important information and urgent actions to protect against khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium). We highly recommend the time be taken to review these measures to understand if it has any effect on your goods. Treatment is mandatory and any container found not to be treated, which is deemed a Khapra Beetle risk, will be re-exported and no provisions for on shore treatment available. DAWE have provided a useful flowchart which can be found here and we have provided further information below.

“In response to the recent and increasing hitchhiker risk of khapra beetle in sea containers, changes to the management of containers is now an immediate priority. Accordingly, new measures for containers (Phase 6A) will be introduced ahead of proposed changes for plant products and seeds for sowing (Phases 3-5). A new webpage detailing the khapra beetle sea container measures is now available.”

What are Target Risk Containers?
A target risk container is defined as a Full Container Load/Full Container Consolidated (FCL/FCX) where:
• high-risk plant products are packed into the sea container in a khapra beetle target risk country
• other goods are packed into the sea container in a khapra beetle target risk country and destined to a rural grain growing area of Australia.

Target risk containers must be:
• treated offshore using a department approved treatment option
• Treated within 21 days prior to export and
• accompanied by appropriate certification.

The target of these treatments is the container and not the goods/commodity being shipped within the container. This means that the container must be treated prior to packing, except if using methyl bromide fumigation.
The start date for these requirements depends on the type of target risk container:

For further information on the above graphic please check
Please do not hesitate to contact the team if you require any further information.

Thanks & kind regards
SILA Customer Service

Shipping Containers Logistics Australia 6

Industry Update 09/03/21


Industry Update

Singapore is experiencing major delays, with vessel turnaround times more than double.
Reported last week in The Loadstar, Peter Sundara of LF Logistics advises “there’s a lot of vessel bunching, which is causing delays, and we see feeders coming in from South-east Asia missing connections with mainline vessels.

In turn, the mainline vessels are coming in overbooked, therefore transhipment containers are missing their nominated vessels and getting rolled – for a week, in some cases”.

Additionally, reports show that wait time in port increased almost 60% from 2020.
Unsurprisingly it is a combination of current factors causing this situation. Increased demand, congestion across all facets of the supply chain, a shortage of useable empty containers and significant disruption to vessel scheduling.

The US West Coast has been experiencing significant port and landside congestion for several months. Whilst it is very difficult to predict when things are likely to get back to normal – the usual slowdown after Chinese New Year has not occurred this year and the unprecedented spike in demand for US imports is expected to continue through to early 2022.

According to MSC’s US president and CEO Fabio Santucci “constant and effective cooperation and communication with partners, vendors & clients” as being key to the current situation. “We were talking to shippers and customers in March and April (2020), and no one envisaged what was about to come. We saw spikes of 50-100% of cargo volume” which had put a “massive strain” on a system that was not designed to handle “a sustained surge over more than 30 weeks”.

According to port of Los Angeles Signal port optimiser data, the average time ships are waiting at anchorage for a berth is now almost 8 days. And when they do get a berth – further delays are experienced because of terminal congestion.

The attached picture, as published in Shipping Australia this week shows a photo taken by the US Coast Guard showing the massive congestion off the coast of LA.

Significant delays on the West Coast then cause delays in other countries and further compound the congestion felt across the world in the supply chain.

Locally, we continue to experience the knock-on effect from congestion experienced around the world. Vessels are arriving off-window, causing berth congestion and some shipping lines have opted to either change port rotation or omit ports in an attempt to reduce the delays.

If you have any questions or need assistance with any of your shipments please contact your local SILA representative.

Landside Tariff increase at Patrick and Hutchison Terminals

Dear customers,

We would like to advise that notice has been received from Patrick Terminals and Hutchison Ports of their revised annual landside tariff (effective 1st & 15th March 2021).

This includes a further increase in Terminal Infrastructure Surcharges, Access Charges and Vehicle Booking System charges (nationally) plus the re-introduction of a sideloader fee which may have an effect on requests to receive deliveries by sideloader direct from slots.

From March 1st these increases will be applied in all states for containers collected at any Patrick Terminal;
• Terminal Infrastructure $10.00
• Vehicle Booking Fees $19.50
• Sideloader Levy (if applicable) $75.00

From March 15th these increases will be applied in all states for containers collected at any Hutchison Ports Terminal;

• Terminal Infrastructure
• Sydney International Container Terminal $53.00
• Brisbane International Container Terminal $45.00
• Vehicle Booking Fees $19.50
• Sideloader Levy (if applicable) $75.00

If you have any questions please contact your local SILA representative.

Thanks & kind regards
SILA Customer Service

MUA launches Industrial Action against VICT


To our valued customers,

Industrial action is due to take place at the Victorian International Container Terminal (VICT) across several days in the next week, and stoppages of work will occur.

VICT reports that it is assessing it's options and will inform terminal users of any implications for trucking and shipping movements.

We will continue to monitor the situation and will advise our customers accordingly.

If you have any questions please contact your local SILA representative.

Thanks & kind regards
SILA Customer Service team

Shipping Containers Logistics Australia 2

Congestion in Sydney Empty Parks


To our valued customers,

We have received multiple notices today alerting industry that there are once again growing issues with Empty Container Park capacity.

Notice has been received that MSC Cooks River will not be able to accept 40ft containers and special equipment effective immediately, however many depots are experiencing issues as outlined below in the notice from Maersk.

Due to some depots not taking certain equipment we may see that the overflow causes congestion at other empty parks which will further exacerbate the issue.

NOTICE from Maersk

Maersk wishes to advise our customers that the industry-wide disruption in Australia has resulted in significant congestion at our empty container depots. To enable safe working conditions, our empty container depots have been forced to intermittently stop acceptance of empty containers into their yards.

Additionally, below is the latest update of our Sydney Depot Acceptance as of today 9th of February.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact your local SILA representative, and we will continue monitor the situation and provide updates as they become available.

Thanks & kind regards

SILA Customer Service

Australian Steel News – Industry Insider February 2021

The payment of Customs Duty and the applicable Goods and Services Tax (GST) can impose a burden to your business cash flow. In most cases, these costs need to be paid prior to collection of cargo by the agent performing the clearance and in turn you will be asked to pay these costs at the same time so that the agent paying on your behalf is not out of pocket, however there is an avenue for you to defer the payment of GST.

In a previous Industry Insider article information was provided regarding Trusted Trader and deferring payments of Duty. The same can be done with GST which can be a much simpler process than becoming a Trusted trader and could be a quick win for importers looking to assist in Cash Flow pressures.

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) provides a mechanism for importers you defer their GST payments to their Business Activity Statement (BAS) period, this alleviating the need for upfront payment. The ATO Deferred GST Site provides the requirements for importers who hold an Australian Business Number (ABN) and lodge their BAS online and pay electronically.

GST is charged on the Value of the Taxable Importation (VOTI), which put simply if the sum of the value of the goods, International Freight and Insurance Charges plus any Duty Applicable. GST can add up quickly on higher value metal imports such as Stainless and Aluminium making the Deferral mechanism especially handy in these areas.

At the time of entry lodgement the GST costs will appear as deferred on the entry with a copy of the deferral amount being sent to the ATO from Border Force which then appears on your BAS statement for reconciliation and lodgement.

For importers who are responsible to pay their import entry charges, even when dealing with overseas suppliers on a Free into Store basis, can also take advantage of deferred GST as long as they meet the following eligibility requirements.

To participate in the deferred GST scheme, you must:
• have an Australian business number (ABN)
• be registered for GST (you can register for GST and apply for an ABN on the one form if you don't already have an ABN)
• lodge your activity statements online and pay electronically
• lodge your activity statements monthly (if you are currently lodging quarterly, this will be changed to monthly once we receive and approve your application)
• ensure the goods or excise-equivalent goods are for home consumption
• if you are a member of a GST group, ensure your nominated representative is registered for the DGST scheme.

Your company accountant may be able to give you more information on whether your company is eligible to participate.

Written by Simon Pepper
Director – Customs & Logistics

Published in Australian Steel News – Vol 4, Issue 6 – Feb 2021

If you would like any additional information regarding GST deferral please contact Simon Pepper at

Import Document Assessment Delays

Dear Clients,

Who does this notice affect?

All clients who submit documentation to the department for import assessment via the Cargo Online Lodgement System (COLS) or other departmental approved systems.

What has changed?

The department acknowledges that clients are currently experiencing delays in receiving their directions and advises that all efforts are being made to manage increased workloads in order to meet published service standards in the Client Service Charter while also effectively managing biosecurity and imported food risks.

The department has seen an unprecedented demand for services including:

  • document lodgements in COLS increasing on average 6% month on month since August 2020.
  • a 20% increase in imported food and dual (Biosecurity/Food) lodgements.
  • Self-Assessed Clearance (SAC) workload increasing by 58% since May 2020 compared to the same period 2019.
  • 62% increase of clients lodging LRNs seeking same day assessment (this has resulted in an unmanageable escalated queue)

What are we doing to manage immediate workload demand?

The department has implemented a range of strategies to address immediate concerns with the management of workload. These include:

  • Diverting appropriately skilled resources, on a temporary basis, from other areas to augment capacity to assist with document assessment, bookings and phone call workload.
  • Return of staff working from home to offices nationally in line with State based COVID restrictions.  This is expected to help speed up assessment timeframes due to better connectivity to departmental systems (i.e. less reliance on staff’s home based Internet Service Providers that have been struggling though unprecedented numbers of Australians working from home.)
  • Fast tracking the training of further Imported Food Assessment officers to help address the significant and unexpected increase in Imported Food LRNs.
  • Developing an automation solution in the SAC environment.
  • Allocation of reasonable amounts of overtime for staff to process lodgements outside core business hours.
  • Last week, we further implemented a strategy/process that will enable us to identify and prioritise those clients in the escalated queue that have lodged early - prioritising these clients along with those that are genuinely in the escalated queue (i.e. reducing the priority of those LRNs that are being lodged late in hopes of getting priority clearance).

The Biosecurity Operations Division will also be expediting the progression of initiatives to help minimise the department’s involvement in lower risk activities where there is a proven compliance history. Initial discussions were held with peak industry bodies on 22 December, with work commencing internally within the department directly after that meeting.  More information will be forthcoming in February regarding this work.

We are also in the final stages of development with our document assessment automation, which will reduce manual, resource intensive functions and speed up the assessment process.

There are a number of other medium/longer term initiatives underway, however we recognise these larger reforms will not address the immediate challenges we are experiencing.

How can clients assist?

Aligned with the workload increase, the department has seen late document lodgements in COLS increase by 62% from last year. The department would like to advise clients of information that may assist in avoiding delays in document assessment:

  • Please ensure that documents are lodged well in advance of arrival of the goods (noting the recent changes we have made to assist the prioritisation process as outlined above).
  • Ensure that documents and other information is lodged completely and accurately and in line with the departments minimum documentary requirements and import conditions.
  • Do not provide unnecessary documents, as this can result in longer assessment times as we work through sometimes 50+ documents to find the 4 or 5 required by the minimum documents policy.
  • Ensure any specific additional information is included in the ‘additional information’ field in COLS.
  • Please do not repeatedly call or email the department checking on the status of a lodgement for document assessment – this compounds the delays.
  • Regardless of the expected assessment outcome, nominate a valid Approved Arrangement (AA) inspection location, preferably with the AA registration number and name, to avoid additional processing delays.

Kind Regards

SILA Customer Service



Dear Customer,

We are sure you are well aware by now of the struggles occurring in the international supply chain:

• Huge manufacturing demand
• Container shortages in major manufacturing countries
• Congestion at ports all around the globe
• Chassis and driver shortages
• Container Park capacity

In addition to the above is the congestion at major transhipment hubs.

Once the difficulty of securing space on a vessel and sourcing the necessary containers is overcome, the next major hurdle affecting the supply chain is congestion and delays at transhipment hubs. Finally after the goods arrive at the final port of discharge, the supply chain also faces (depending on destination) congestion within the port, lack of chassis/trucks, drivers, and ultimately a place to de-hire the empty container.

This article from Seatrade highlights delays at transhipment ports around the globe:

If you have any questions about the state of the supply chain and how your shipments are impacted - please contact your local SILA Global representative.

Thanks & kind regards
SILA Global Customer Service

Shipping Container Transport Logistics

Australian Steel News – Industry Insider January 2021

January 2021

The Department of Home Affairs in conjunction with the Australian Border Force is seeing an uptake among importers and exporters of its Australian Trusted Trader program. The program is a voluntary partnership between
accredited businesses and the Australian Government (Border Force) with the aim to streamline and facilitate trade and enhance supply chain security.

Benefits to members continue to evolve, indeed members are encouraged to make suggestions on improvements to the program. The program offers certain benefits to importers which could be extremely helpful to their business in affecting cash flow and administrative work.

One of the benefits is Duty Deferral. Becoming a member allows you to arrange duty deferral, including any dumping duty, in a similar way to GST, allowing payments to occur after the goods have been imported. This could help businesses which usually may need to pay large amounts prior to cargo collection. Duty deferral allows extra time for the payment and thus may reduce interest payable and other financing costs.

Another benefit within the program is Origin Waiver. Australia has many Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) and paying duty is not a huge burden for some businesses. However, the issue then arises of taking advantage of FTAs and ensuring you have the correct documentation (Free Trade Certificates) at the time of entry. Origin Waiver under the Trusted Trader program allows an accredited business to enter goods under an FTA without the need for a certificate. This does not apply to China FTAs at present, but may do so in the future.

Becoming a member of the Trusted Trader program is well worth considering. The website has a sub category which details additional benefits which may apply to your particular business.

Written by Simon Pepper
Director – Customs & Logistics

Published in Australian Steel News – Vol 4, Issue 5 – Jan 2021

We encourage our customers to become Trusted Traders and are happy to assist. To find our more about the application process please contact Simon Pepper -