Major Congestion At Australian Ports

Heavy congestion in ports in Western Australia, the country's largest wheat exporting state, is causing severe delays and threatening the wheat trade there, according to media reports.

South Korea, one of Australia's biggest customers, has written a letter of complaint to the Australian Embassy in Seoul asking for the situation to be sorted out quickly, or they might just take their business elsewhere in the future.

Grower-owned business Cooperative Bulk Handling operates a monopoly over all grain exports in the state. CBH reportedly stopped taking fixtures recently whilst it attempts to sort out the mess. Their website lists 69 vessels either already at CBH's four main export terminals or due to arrive during March/April. Many of the listings show vessels not due to commence loading for a month or more after arriving.

The problem seems most acute in Albany where the MV Genco Acheron is listed arriving on 26th Feb but not due to commence loading until 16th April:

Who is picking up the tab for this lot?