top of page

Reasons for Cargo Abandonment by Importers at Ports

cargo abandonment

The reasons for abandonment are varied but one of the most common causes is the seller and buyer having a commercial disagreement, leading to the latter sometimes rejecting the consignment at the destination port.

We have also observed changes in regulation, often introduced at short notice, prohibiting the importation of certain goods, as well as also regulatory checks identifying non-compliant goods which cannot be imported. As well as the perceived difficulties of cargo clearing processes, which could result in some shippers abandoning their cargo at the ports following accumulated demurrages.

However, cargo imports clearing isn't rocket science, and really shouldn't cause panic for importers.

We encourage our readers to plan ahead, seek out and talk to a credible agent before processing any shipment for imports, bearing in mind that attempting to cut corners will always have consequences, and seeking out just the cheapest solutions will come at its own cost down the line.

Speaking on the issue, Mr. Jonathan Nicol, the President of the Shippers Association of Lagos State (SALS), states that most importers that abandon the goods do so when the demurrage that they are to pay is more than the value of the consignments stuck at the port. He noted that apart from the importer, end-users of such goods, industry and the economy lose out.

According to him, “When an importer now knows that what he is going to pay on demurrage is more than what you can afford or more than the value of the goods, he/she is likely to abandon these goods and once he/she does, everybody is losing."

“So every microsecond of the time someone is getting paid. It’s either Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, terminal operators, the shipping lines or the transporters because the goods are coming in and are supposed to go out.

In reality, all shipping terminals do allow some free time (average 4-7 days) with possibility of extension at request.

And due to bad planning and/or bad advise, shippers and importers expend time and money, and commit a network of freight forwarders and logistics industry partners to process and handle cargoes, only to have them abandoned as a result of evading avoidable demurrage charges.

Of course, this is why we're here. Universe Logistics and its global network have the answers to solve and avoid this problem for you, speak with us about your upcoming Import/Export shipments, and we can guarantee 100% shipment success

E-mail us at , or call +44 203 004 9397


bottom of page