Reliable sources said that the decision of diverting the ship was taken immediately after a news report appeared inBusiness Recorder on March 18 this year regarding cross-contamination at KPT, where coal and canola were being discharged simultaneously and side by side.
The ship Union Mariner is now planned to berth at PQA outer anchorage, according to PQA”s website. Source said that the dedicated plant and equipment to handle canola, urea and fertiliser, a quicker discharge rate and deeper draft allows PQA to be the most cost-efficient port of Pakistan when it comes to handling imported canola, urea and fertiliser. The objective of Port Qasim Authority is to operate and handle bulk cargo, including all types of canola, fertiliser, urea and fertiliser raw materials.
He further added that Glencore has taken this decision after speaking with the local importers of canola oilseeds. The company asked the importers that despite knowing the fact the KPT cannot handle canola and coal simultaneously why they are insisting the vessel to be berthed at KPT. The importers revealed that they were being pushed to bring the vessels at KPT. Importers further revealed that there is a cartel with the patronage of top KPT officials to keep hold over port operations.
Glencore was completely unaware and kept in the dark on cross contamination issue. The decision of diverting the vessels at FAP Terminal taken on the basis of corporate social responsibility and company strictly follows its CSR practices. The company took this decision in great favour of people of Pakistan in order to secure them from contamination at KPT, source said.