The Middle East Navigation Aids Service (Menas) is cutting, with effect from July 1, 2006, its navigation dues tariffs for ships calling at ports in the Middle East Gulf
. In addition to cutting its tariff for navigation dues by 50 percent, Menas is also overhauling its dues-charging structure to rationalize its impact on different classes of users. Smaller vessels, i.e. those below 15,000 net registered tons (nrt), that currently pay relatively little and incur proportionately heavy administrative costs will be exempt from all dues. At the other end of the scale, rates for larger vessels will be capped at dues equivalent to those of a 40,000 nrt vessel. This latter adjustment recognizes that disproportionate charges are currently levied on larger vessels, particularly tankers. The standard tariff will now be $1.65 per 100 nrt.
“These large reductions mark the culmination of a long and determined process within Menas to reduce our costs and rationalize our working practices,” states John Gyles, Menas chairman. “The most notable development in this process was the introduction by Menas of its new multi-purpose offshore support ship Relume at the end of 2004. Since entering service, the ship has been employed in a number of offshore operations in the Gulf, as well as in tending navigation aids in the Gulf and off the coast of Oman.
“Previous Menas light tenders were confined to navigation aids support alone and, as a consequence, their entire costs were a charge on the service,” explains John Gyles. “The new ship, which is much more versatile and equipped to the most modern standards, has found ample alternative employment with third parties. Since this vessel’s appearance, Menas has been relieved of the whole cost of the ship and is now able to pass these and other savings on to its shipowner clients.”