Arawak Port Development Limited (APD) has decided to reduce port fees by 50 percent for 30 days, given the economic strain being felt in the country as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) threat.
APD, in a statement released yesterday, explained that on top of the reduction in port fees, it will waive rents and leases at the Gladstone Freight Terminal for the month of April and allow free storage time for already loaded containers and vehicles by 14 days.
Businesses have already begun to feel the pinch as a result of the economic slowdown cause by COVID-19.
APD President and Chief Executive Officer Dion Bethell said in the statement that the container port and freight terminal are critical to supply chains across The Bahamas.
“This has always been the stance of APD since the company’s launch in 2009. In our commitment to corporate and social responsibility, we have become a trusted partner with NEMA (National Emergency Management Agency) in that agency’s leadership of national disaster management and relief over the past ten years,” Bethell said.
“Additionally, our company supports a number of NGOs in their national development missions.
“We will continue to contribute logistics expertise, facilities and highly competent manpower, whenever our country needs and our means permit. APD does the same through its philanthropic portfolio, which encompasses any number of civic programs and outreach.”
Bethell said he hopes that APD’s efforts to ease the economic burden on its clients will trickle down through the supply chain during this challenging time.
Many companies have begun helping citizens as the depth of the economic fallout from COVID-19 becomes evident.
“There can be little doubt that the COVID-19 crisis carries the potential for great harm to the health and well-being of The Bahamas and promises to be equally disruptive nationally in terms of economic fallout,” said Bethell.