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'Fake goods' to blame for congestion at JIP

Saudi minister reveals unique reason for build-up at Jeddah port.
A container ship is unloaded at Jeddah Islamic Port, scene of heavy congestion in the last month or so.
A container ship is unloaded at Jeddah Islamic Port, scene of heavy congestion in the last month or so.

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The Saudi transport minister, Jabara Al-Seraisry, has blamed the ongoing congestion problems at the Kingdom's largest port on the arrival of imitation products, according to the Arab News daily.

“Customs department officials required more time to inspect such products to protect consumers,” said Al-Seraisy, in an interview with the newspaper shortly after a meeting with Khaled Boubsheet, president of the Saudi Ports Authority.

"During my inspection tour, I found some 8000 containers that were present at the port being cleared by customs officials and keeping them ready for transportation,” Al-Seraisy added.

The minister was visiting Jeddah Islamic Port on the directives of King Abdullah, Crown Prince Sultan and Second Deputy Premier  and Minister of Interior Prince Naif, who had instructed the official to find ways of solving the congestion issues that have hampered throughput at the hub, which receives about 65% of the Kingdom's imports. 

Al-Seraisy also told the newspaper that there was strong cooperation between the various agencies to speed up the clearance of consignments and denied suggestions that local port and customs officials were to blame for the bottleneck.

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