Sunday, July 25, 2010

Former PTP chief set to be Johor Port CEO

According to the Business Times, Johor Port CEO Abdul Khalid was given the option to join Port of Tanjung Pelepas' parent MMC Corp or go on leave.

THE former chief executive officer of Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) Captain Ismail Hashim is poised to join Johor Port Bhd as its new executive director beginning August 1, replacing Abdul Khalid Lal Khan.

According to sources, Abdul Khalid was given the option to join PTP's parent MMC Corp Bhd or go on leave.

It is understood that he was among those who opposed to the rationalisation plan involving PTP and Johor Port.

The realignment at PTP is seen as a move by MMC to finally push forward the rationalisation of the two ports after almost a decade of trying to see it through.

It is understood that staff at Johor Port were briefed of this move last Friday.

However, a representative from MMC Corp declined to comment when contacted. MMC wholly owns Johor Port and has a 70 per cent stake in PTP.

Under the rationalisation plan, all container operations will be moved to PTP in Gelang Patah while Johor Port in Pasir Gudang will handle all other cargoes such as bulk and liquid shipments.

This was reportedly a move taken to ease the congestion in Johor Port which is operating at full capacity with no room for expansion.

In addition, the usage of larger container vessels require the port to have certain equipment and depths to receive them.

Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers Johor Branch was also reported to be against the idea initially as the proposed move would cause disruptions in operations for manufacturers in Pasir Gudang, Tampoi and Tebrau Industrial Estates.

It is estimated that the haulage costs will double after taking into account the higher port charges at PTP.

Another report indicated that to reduce the cost burden, PTP and MMC had come out with several suggestions including a lower port tariff.

"Currently, many contracts and agreements could not proceed due to the uncertainties of this rationalisation," said a source.

The move was supposed to take effect on January 1 this year but is reportedly still waiting for the government's decision.

The outcome of discussions between PTP and manufacturers at Johor Port on the issue had been submitted to the Transport Ministry last year.

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