Changes To The Freight Transport Subsidy

In July 2022 Executive Council agreed a package of measures as part of its Cost of Living Policy to mitigate the impacts of increased cost of living on St Helena.  One of the measures which Ministers agreed, is to adjust the Freight Transport Subsidy for transporting cargo from Ruperts into Jamestown.  It was agreed that the subsidy applicable to non-essential goods should be removed and that the subsidy for containers categorised as food provisions, animal feed and reefers, should increase.  This will increase the importation cost on non-essential goods but decrease the importation cost of essential goods, which will enable merchants to make comparable decreases in the cost of essential goods for consumers on-Island.

Therefore, with effect from V055 of the MV Helena through to V062, all dry or reefer (chilled and frozen) containers, Less than container load (LCL) or Break Bulk cargo imported to St Helena containing food provisions or animal feed will be eligible for the Freight Transport Subsidy subject to meeting the eligibility criteria outlined below. 

All other containers and cargo will not be eligible for the Freight Transport Subsidy from voyage, V056 and will be charged the relevant Terminal Handling Charges (THC) applicable by AW Ship Management Ltd (AWSML). 

In order to qualify for the Freight Transport Subsidy the following criteria must be met by the Importer or Consignee:  

  • The containers or cargo for which the subsidy would apply must be categorised as either of the following: 
    • Food provisions
    • Animal feed
    • Reefer (Chilled or Frozen).
  • The container or cargo must only contain food provisions or animal feed.  Mixed goods containers or cargo are not eligible for the subsidy, unless it is easily identifiable by AWSML through LCL bookings 
  • The importer must not have any outstanding customs debt for previous shipments
  • The importer confirms that they will pass the benefit of the subsidy onto consumers or local retailers through their pricing structure where goods are imported for resale purposes.

The subsidy will be calculated as follows: 

For containers and cargo on the most recent voyage, V055 the following subsidy rates will apply: 

  • FCL (Full container load) (dry, chilled or frozen) £1,600 per container
  • LCL (Less than container load) (dry, chilled or frozen) w/m x £64
  • BBK (Break Bulk) w/m x £64.

For containers and cargo arriving on V056 through to V062 the following subsidy rates will apply:

  • FCL (Full container load) (dry, chilled or frozen) £2,052 per container
  • LCL (Less than container load) (dry, chilled or frozen) w/m x £88
  • BBK (Break Bulk) w/m x £88.

Note: Whether weight or measure is used to calculate the subsidy is determined by what unit is used by AWSML to calculate THC. 

The Freight Transport Subsidy will now be administered by St Helena Government directly and applications can be made by importers for the subsidy within 14 days of the arrival of the MV Helena to St Helena.  A separate application is required for each voyage.  Applications for V055 can be made from today up until 31 August 2022. 

Applications should be made on the applicable form which can be downloaded from the Treasury page of the SHG website here:  and delivered to the Post & Customer Services Centre either by placing in the Drop-off Box located in the passage way of the Ground Floor or by emailing:

Applications will be processed within 14 days from the date of receipt of the application form.  The information declared by the applicant will be verified against the manifest data obtained from AW Ship Management Ltd.  St Helena Government reserves the right to examine the container, LCL or break bulk cargo to confirm its contents and will contact importers if this is required. 

Payment of the subsidy will be made within 14 days of receipt of the application subject to all information on the application form being correct and verified.  Payments will be made into the bank account stipulated on the application form.  Payments will not be made in cash.  All payments will be by account transfer to a Bank of St Helena account.  The bank account into which the payment will be made must be in the name of the importer or consignee.  hELENA

For enquiries regarding the subsidy and process for claiming the subsidy please contact Assistant Customer Services Centre Manager, Alan Bennett, via email: or call 22008 during normal working hours (8.30am – 4pm Mondays to Fridays).   

#StHelena #FreightTransportSubsidy


19 August 2022

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470