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Major Seaport Trade Facilitation Initiative Launched

Castries – Friday, November 21, 2014 –The Saint Lucia Air and Sea Ports Authority (SLASPA)has been working with local industry partners to launch a seaport initiative that will facilitate the movement of goods in the CARICOM region, Martinique and Guadeloupe. The Less than Contain Load (LCL) Initiative is an initiative designed to reduce the cost associated with the shipment of containerized goods between Saint Lucia and the CARICOM Countries as well as the French islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe. LCL Containers by definition are containers which have cargo belonging to more than one person or consignee.

Keigan Cox, General Manager/CEO of SLASPA highlighted the benefits of the LCL Initiative “as the owners and managers of the islands airports and seaports, we are always seeking ways in which we can aid in the development of local businesses. Not only through ensuring we have faster more efficient services, but developing initiatives such as this one which encourages trade in the CARICOM Region. To facilitate this, SLASPA has created a tariff structure that provides a 35% discount per cubic foot on dockside, stevedoring and destuffing charges for LCL CARICOM origin Cargo. In addition, six months after this launch, we will also be allowing mixed loads and this is based on feedback from our stakeholder meetings”.

Prior to the launch of the initiative, SLASPA held a series of consultations with stakeholders including the Chamber of Commerce, St. Lucia Manufacturers Association, St. Lucia Small Business Association and seaport stakeholders who gave valuable insight and feedback.

Gerard Bergasse, Island Manager of Tropical Shipping  and Board Member of the Chamber of Commerce indicated that “we are pleased that SLASPA has developed and launched the LCL initiative which will ease the process of doing business in Saint Lucia. The benefits of LCL initiative will be far reaching as now there is a greater opportunity for local businesses to boost sales and expand into regional markets. The Chamber and its members pledge their support to SLASPA on this initiative and look forward to working with the organisation on developing other initiatives which will aid business development in Saint Lucia.”

The benefits of the LCL initiative are far reaching and include the ability to import raw materials more cost efficiently, businesses won’t have to pay for a full container load if they do not have enough cargo to full a container and there is now better predictability in the pricing of Port Services as SLASPA has also reduced container destuffing and stuffing charges for LCL CARICOM origin Cargo.

For more information on the LCL Initiative, visit www.slaspa.com or call 457 6146.