By Hussein Ghanima
Ahmed Mustafa, Director of the maritime shipping line “PIL”, recently said that work has temporarily ceased at the Port of Sokhna due to poor worker performance. The port, which was previously under the jurisdiction of the company Platinum Shipping, is currently run by the General Authority for Red Sea Ports. Transfer of freight to and from ships located on the docks has decreased significantly in recent months, with an average of 8 containers transferred per shift, compared with the previous rate of 25 containers per shift.
Mustafa added that companies operating on the Singapore maritime shipping line would re-route their freight from China and Japan to ports in Djibouti, in order to avoid what they described as a problem of “worker laziness”. No legal restrictions currently exist that would prevent the company from doing so.
On 9 May Platinum Shipping workers in the Port of Sokhna purposely slowed down their work when transferring freight to and from ships. As a result, freight shipments that previously took one day’s worth of work were now taking upwards of five days to complete. This prompted companies working from Singapore to shut down their operations at the Port of Sokhna.