In view of the increasing COVID cases and scarcity of oxygen and related equipment in the country, the Government of India (GOI) has directed all major ports to waive off all charges levied by Major Port Trusts (including vessel-related charges, storage charges etc.) and accord highest priority in the berthing sequence to the ships carrying consignments of Medical Grade Oxygen, Oxygen Tanks, Oxygen Bottles, Portable Oxygen Generators, Oxygen Concentrators, and Steel Pipes for manufacturing Oxygen Cylinders and associated equipment for the next three months, or until further orders.
Furthermore, the port chairpersons have been asked by the government to personally supervise logistic operations to ensure unhindered movement of such consignments, berthing of such vessel on top priority in the port, unloading of oxygen related cargo, coordination with Customs and other authorities for speedy clearance/documentation and expeditious evacuation of oxygen related cargo from port.
If cargo or container is being carried in addition to the oxygen related cargo in any vessel, waiver of charges on pro-rata basis, considering the overall cargo or containers handled at port, should be provided for oxygen related cargo to such vessels.
The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways will monitor the details of such vessels, cargo and time taken in the port from the time vessel entered in the port limits to exit of cargo from port gate.
GOI is deeply engaged in handling the crisis that has come upon the nation with the second wave of COVID-19 and taking all steps to counter the situation through appropriate and innovative measures.