The Government is reforming public cargo working areas (PCWAs) to increase efficiency, according to Port Development Board (PDB) secretary Richard Yuen Ming-fai.
He said work practices at these strategic and prime sites had not changed for many years and the Government wanted to make them more modern and competitive.
'Our objective is to give the PCWA operators more control over their berth and more space for loading and unloading the cargo,' he said.
PCWA working practices, which had not changed since the 1970s, were unacceptable, Mr Yuen said. At present, one operator handles cargo loading and unloading and another storage.
Under the latest changes, a PCWA operator will be allowed to rent berthing space for three years. Talks are continuing with eight operators on storage areas.
Separately, Mr Yuen said the PDB still aimed at next month for completion of talks on Container Terminal 9.
Modern Terminals (MTL) is negotiating with Sea-Land-led Asia Container Terminals on berth-swapping.