In its proposal to the SA Ports Regulator, the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) acknowledges that the current port tariff structure is sub-optimal and presents several issues in terms of transparency, compliance, fairness and overall acceptability by port users, said the Regulator’s website.

The new proposed tariff structure, outlined in the “Approved Tariff Strategy for the South African Port System 2015/16” document, represents a clear but cautious departure from the current practice. And it is based on the consistent application of sound design principles, a more balanced distribution of charges to the different port user groups, as well as being more strongly aligned with international norms and standards and SA national policy objectives.

Whilst the Regulator has taken a number of elements from the proposal, the overall trajectory of the tariff strategy is a more decisive adjustment towards a truly cost-reflective pricing system that will greatly benefit all users, as well as the broader SA economy, in the medium to long term.

The approach in developing the tariff strategy was to determine a cost-reflective asset allocation, rationalise tariff lines in accordance with the asset allocation, then criteria for deviating from those tariffs was established in special public interest cases.