Voluntary Pricing Protocol for stevedore landside charges

The Voluntary Pricing Protocol has been developed in close consultation with port stevedores, transport bodies, the Port of Melbourne and Australia’s peak shipping body.

The Voluntary Pricing Protocol establishes clear protocols for notification periods for price increases or the introduction of any new landside charges, explanation of price increases, and the timing of price changes.

The new notice periods have been introduced for greater consistency with other jurisdictions, including at Port Botany.

The Voluntary Protocol for notifications regarding pricing for container stevedore landside charges is as follows:

Voluntary Protocol: Notifications regarding pricing for landside charges

Container terminal operators in the Port of Melbourne that levy charges to access their terminals are requested to adhere to this protocol to increase the transparency and predictability of charges.

  1. Stevedore terminal handling [1] charges will only be changed once per annum [2] [3] .
  2. Stevedores must issue a notice of intention to the Secretary, Department of Transport, and industry, 60 days prior to the proposed date of the increase of an existing charge or introduction of a new charge.
  3. The notice of intention to change prices or introduce a new charge to the Department of Transport must be accompanied by detailed reasons for the increase or introduction of a new charge, including all relevant supporting information or data [4] .
  4. The notice of intention to change prices or introduce a new charge to Industry will be published on the operator’s website and must outline relevant detail of the rationale for the price increase or introduction of a new charge [5] .
  5. Stevedores will receive feedback from Department of Transport, and industry, on the proposed increase or introduction of a new charge. This feedback will be published on the Department of Transport website based on the feedback themes.
  6. Stevedores must issue a final notice of changed prices 30 days prior to the date of the proposed increase. The final notice should incorporate a statement of engagement summarising issues raised by affected stakeholders and the response of the terminal operator.

These guidelines apply to any proposed increases from 1 July 2020.

[1] This incorporates all charges payable in connection with the operation or provision of land-based facilities and services at terminals.

[2] If additional increases are required within a twelve-month period, this protocol should be followed.

[3] Stevedores may nominate a specific date if desired.

[4] Feedback was received that clauses 3 and 4 duplicate each other.  The purpose of having two clauses was to facilitate the provision of detailed information to the Department that operators may not wish to provide to industry.

[5]To clarify the mechanism for consultation with industry.

Stevedore notifications

Stevedore DP World
Rate type Terminal access charge
Effective date 1 May 2021
60 days’ notice issue date (due date) 3 March 2021 (due 2 March 2021)
60 days' industry notice (including rationale for price changes) 15 March 2021 (due 2 March 2021)
Feedback Contact DP World directly by 26 March 2021 to provide feedback:
[email protected]
30 days’ notice issue date (due date) TBC (due 1 April 2021)
Final industry notice TBC

Stevedore Patrick Terminals
Rate type Landside charge at East Swanson Dock – VBS fees and import storage charges
Effective date 1 March 2021
60 days’ notice issue date (due date) 10 December 2020 (due 31 December 2020) provided to DoT
60 days' industry notice (including rationale for price changes) Not issued
Feedback Not sought by terminal
30 days’ notice issue date (due date) 29 January 2021 (due 30 January 2021)
Final industry notice Patrick Terminals industry notice

Stevedore VICT
Rate type Carrier Access Agreement – Billing Terms and Conditions
Effective date  1 January 2021
60 days’ notice issue date (due date)  2 November 2020
60 days' industry notice (including rationale for price changes)  Not issued
Feedback Not sought by terminal
30 days’ notice issue date (due date)  27 November 2020 (due 2 December 2020)
Final industry notice VICT industry notice

Stevedore DPW
Rate type Carrier Access Public Tariff Schedule
Effective date 1 January 2021
60 days’ notice issue date (due date) 2 November 2020 (due 2 November 2020) provided to DoT
60 days' industry notice (including rationale for price changes) Not issued
Feedback Not sought by terminal
30 days’ notice issue date (due date) 20 November 2020 (due 2 December 2020)
Final industry notice DPW industry notice

Please provide formal feedback on these price notifications directly to the relevant stevedore.

If you wish to provide comments to the Department of Transport, please email your feedback to [email protected]