Dubai Maritime Authority Issues New Directive to Enhance Transparency
Dubai Maritime Authority (DMA), at the Ports, Customs, and Free Zone Corporation, the government authority responsible for regulating, coordinating, and supervising all aspects of Dubai’s maritime sector, has introduced Directive No. 1 of 2023 on transparency of local sea container charges in Dubai.
The directive requires all service providers to declare their local sea container charges to the DMA, through the secure Dubai Trade single window portal.
The new directive, which came into effect from Monday, will provide the DMA with a clear data-led understanding of local sea container charges and associated practices.
Sheikh Saeed bin Ahmed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, Executive Director of Dubai Maritime Authority, said: “The newly introduced directive is based on a thorough study we conducted as part of efforts to consolidate Dubai’s status as a global maritime hub, enhance the transparency and cost-visibility of local sea container charges, and ultimately boost the sector’s investment attractiveness.
"The introduction of the directive will allow us to analyse data submitted by service providers and determine whether they reflect commercial best practices and fair competition, which we are tasked with promoting in Dubai’s maritime sector.”
The directive applies to all service providers providing local sea container services within, outside, or through any port in the emirate.
This includes existing service providers, who, as of the effective date, are already licensed by a licensing authority in Dubai including the Department of Economy and Tourism, or special development zones and free zones such as the Dubai International Financial Centre Authority, to provide sea container services.
It also applies to new service providers, who will become licensed on or after the effective date. In this case, the directive applies to sea container charges that the provider intends to apply from the date that the provider becomes licensed to provide sea container services.
All existing service providers must submit a list of their existing local sea container charges to the Authority within 30 days of the effective date of the Directive, while new service providers must submit a list of all their existing sea container charges within 30 days of first being licensed.
From Monday, all service providers are prohibited from increasing their existing sea container charges in any way.
A service provider may increase its sea container charges strictly to reflect new or increased authority, port operator or government charges, provided such an increase does not include any charges or amounts for their account. The freeze on service charges will apply until further notice.
Service providers are required to upload all of their existing local sea container charges onto the Dubai Trade Single Window Portal, in addition to any other information or document that may be required by the DMA from time to time.
To comply with Directive No. 1, service providers are required to declare all local charges using the sea container charges acronyms, codes, names, and descriptions.
If any charges are not listed, the service providers are required to declare these using the additional ‘miscellaneous’ option provided within the portal.