Djibouti Gives Ethiopia Cargo Ultimatum

Ethiopian authorities in the transport sector need to travel to Djibouti to persuade their counterparts not to stick to the ultimatum they set on cargo clearance. From left: Worqneh Gebeyehu, minister of Transport; Mekonnen Abera, director general of Ethiopian Maritime Affairs Authority; and Getachew Mengiste, state minister for Transport. They met their counterparts from Djibouti at the Sheraton Addis last week, to discuss joint railway projects. The highly charged issue of the ultimatum has been left for another meet, possibly in Djibouti /Addis Fortune
Ethiopian authorities in the transport sector need to travel to Djibouti to persuade their counterparts not to stick to the ultimatum they set on cargo clearance. From left: Worqneh Gebeyehu, minister of Transport; Mekonnen Abera, director general of Ethiopian Maritime Affairs Authority; and Getachew Mengiste, state minister for Transport. They met their counterparts from Djibouti at the Sheraton Addis last week, to discuss joint railway projects. The highly charged issue of the ultimatum has been left for another meet, possibly in Djibouti /Addis Fortune

Source: Addis Fortune (Addis Ababa)

The government of Djibouti has given a deadline of January 15, 2014, for challenging the manner in which cargo is released from its ports. The new rules will state that no cargo inbound to Ethiopia will be released until the clearing agent in Djibouti produces a note from banks stating that foreign exchange to pay for transport, transit and forwarding services has actually been transferred.

A circular instructing offices in Djibouti to this effect has been distributed by the government, according to diplomatic sources in Djibouti.

The decision will alter the status quo, whereby a clearing agent in Djibouti pays for the services from their own account and bills its Ethiopian counterparts later on. Indeed, there is a port utilisation bilateral agreement that the two countries signed in April 2002, which allows Ethiopian forwarding companies to transfer funds two weeks after the cargo of their clients has been released from the port.

However, Djiboutian transit and forwarding companies have been complaining about delayed payments from their Ethiopian counterparts, while the latter blame the Central Bank for its failure to provide them with foreign currency on time. Read more …

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