Guatemala: Port and Custom Offices Blockades Continue

The private sector is demanding that the government investigate the possible existence of criminal structures which may be operating in an organized manner behind the strike at some ports and customs offices.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

From a statement issued by the Chamber of Agriculture in Guatemala:

Guatemala, November 2, 2016. Given the situation under which for a sixth consecutive day import and export of products have been halted in Puerto Quetzal, Puerto Santo Tomas de Castilla and on the border of Tecun Uman,

- We reiterate our absolute respect for the right of any citizen to demonstrate peacefully. 

- We condemn the violent acts committed in recent days, documented in photographs, videos and audios in the public domain that conclusively show that the taking over and shutdown of the main ports in the country do not correspond to a peaceful demonstration. 

- We denounce publicly and demand that the Public Ministry investigate the possible existence of criminal structures which may be operating in an organized manner behind the strikes at some ports and customs offices, threatening national security. 

More on this topic

Blockades at Guatemala - Mexico Customs Offices

July 2016

Losses of up to $1 million a day in exports are being reported due to demonstrations which have closed off Customs offices in Tecun Uman, El Carmen and La Mesilla for the last 8 days.

Although the union of exporters has tried to contact the Mexican authorities to end the blockade that is preventing the free movement of goods from Guatemala to Mexico, the problem has not been resolved and customs offices have now been paralyzed for eight days.

Blockades at Puerto Santo Tomas

March 2016

In protest against the slow pace with which procedures are processed at customs offices, a group of customs managers and truck drivers have blocked off the entrance to the terminal facilities. reports that on Friday afternoon "... a group of about 350 people blocked access to facilities of the Port of Santo Tomas de Castilla." The blockades started on Wednesday, March 9, causing delays and discomfort for exporters and importers.

Unions Call For Solutions to Strike At Salvadoran Borders

January 2014

Central American companies are asking the Salvadoran government to intervene in the conflict, which is already generating huge losses.

Legislation in the region allows customs offices to design nonintrusive inspection methods, but these should not generate arrears in clearance or excessive costs which obstruct the free movement of goods, services and people.

Strike at Customs Offices in El Salvador

June 2012

Goods vehicles can not pass through customs posts at the Salvadoran border, where Treasury officials are on strike.

Various business groups have expressed concern about the strike, which is causing serious economic losses for businesses.

Regarding this, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in El Salvador states that "We have learned from our partners that the suspension of customs duties has already begun to generate losses of perishable products, delays in delivery times and possible shortages of basic goods, especially vegetables from other countries in the region and those that supply El Salvador. "

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