Page Seven / La Paz
The delay in the arrival of PCR tests taken by Inlasa paralyzed the passage in Tambo Quemado, where more than 1,000 trucks remain stopped without being able to reach the Chilean port. Export cargo arrives on ships in up to 21 days.
The carriers decided to block the place because the results of 200 PCR tests that were taken to show the Chilean authorities and pass the border milestone towards the port did not arrive.
“Right now the border complex is empty, they decided to close and there is not a single truck, Inlasa did not comply with the results of the PCR tests,” said a carrier.
Due to the lack of PCR tests, the trucks no longer passed until the milestone, where the authorities closed the site at noon.
Another driver pointed out that Inlasa harmed them, so the drivers are adrift without a medical certificate or invoice to show the Chilean authorities as proof that the Covid-19 tests were taken. “The problem is that Inlasa is not complying with the agreement, since they did not take the samples, there is a lot of lag, that is why the line does not advance. Today they could no longer get the trucks up to the border milestone,” said another carrier.
Another driver maintained that they spent 200 bolivianos on the test and if they no longer work in the following days, Inlasa will not return the money.
There are more than 1,000 trucks that are still in line at Tambo Quemado without being able to move forward with the load, according to testimonies from the transport sector.
The president of the National Chamber of Exporters (Caneb), Danilo Velasco, reported that there was some improvement in the passage of trucks with the Government’s efforts to extend service hours in the Chilean facilities, but the problem persists with the truck congestion.
“Before, the containers with export cargo that left La Paz, from Oruro on a Saturday, already entered the port on Monday. Now it takes six days just to cross the border”, he specified.
He added that before Chile exercised more controls per day, between 800 and 1,800 trucks passed through, but now only 300 to 400 pass through. The carriers who are in Tambo Quemado indicated that in recent days only about 120 trucks passed through.
“We are concerned about the delay in the passage and flow because in the end the containers with the cargo set sail for their destination after 21 days,” Velasco lamented.
The delay in the arrival of the cargo at the port results in fines that increase the costs for exporters. “It is assumed that we ship between 800 and 1,200 trucks, the costs per container are 150 dollars, that is, there is a cost of 300 thousand dollars per day that is lost, to that shipping costs must be increased, if you do not comply, it is 250 dollars of fine and if the cargo does not arrive at the port on time, they charge you up to 400 dollars and it must take another week,” he said.
The exporters hope that the flow and passage to the port of Arica will improve.