Kathmandu, May 4
Rolling back its decision to hike the cargo handling fees at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) a month ago, the government has decided to implement the previous rate of cargo handling fees for a certain period.
The Nepal Transit Warehouse Company (NTWC), a month ago, had increased cargo handling fees on different products, depending on their type. However, traders had criticised the government for increasing the cargo handling fees and sought an immediate rollback of the decision citing that increment in cargo fees would increase the price of all exportable goods and imported products.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) has authorised NTWC to manage the cargo service in TIA.
“We have been directed by CAAN to implement the previous rate of cargo handling recently and the previous rate has come into implementation,” an official of NTWC said. However, the NTWC official also said that a new revised rate of cargo handling fee will be implemented from July 16 onwards.
Private sector organisations like the Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI) and Nepal Chamber of Commerce (NCC) have been saying that increment in cargo handling fees would lead Nepali export-based companies to lose their competitiveness in the domestic market.
According to CNI President Hari Bhakta Sharma, government should not think of increasing the cargo handling fees as it will leave a negative impact on domestic trade and revenue of the government.
Similarly, Rajesh Kazi Shrestha, president of NCC, said that increase in cargo handling fees will widen the trade deficit of the country. “As Nepali products get dearer in the foreign market with increment in cargo handling fees, our products will fail to compete in the international market,” Shrestha said.
A version of this article appears in print on May 05, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.