The Mombasa Port has ended the year 2019 on a positive note after registering a record 1.4 million cargo boxes compared to 1.304 million in 2018.
The achievement announced on Monday by the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Managing Director, Dr. Daniel Manduku surpassed the port containerized cargo target of 1.35 million Twenty Foot Equivalent unit (Teus).
Dr. Manduku said the growth in containerized cargo represents 50,000 teus or 3.7 percent and that the port will handle more containers by the closure of 2019.
“The performance is as a result of acquisition of modern equipment, dedicated workers and good relations with stakeholder,” said the KPA boss during a media briefing.
Dr. Manduku also attributed the performance to quick evacuation of cargo by Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) to the Inland Container Depot Nairobi (ICDN) which he said helped to eradicate yard congestion that also allowed better operational planning.
The MD said “the attainment of 1.4 million teus represents a growth of 7.3 percent over 2018’s 1.304 million teus, an increase of 97,000 teus.”
He further added that the port of Mombasa had set a target of 33.580 tonnes in 2019 but was set to handle a throughput of 34 million tonnes compared to 30.923 tonnes registered in 2018.
Dr. Manduku said the cargo movement at the port was being shared equally between the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and container trucks.
“Cargo is shared among players at the port. About 1200 trucks get in and out of the port collecting cargo daily,” said the KPA boss
The coastal city of Mombasa recently witnessed a series of demonstrations against the government over a decision to transport all cargo from the Port of Mombasa to Nairobi Inland Container Depot by SGR.
The order has since been rescinded and trucks are allowed to transport cargo from the port to Nairobi and other destinations,
Dr. Manduku noted the performance in containerized cargo was boosted by unprecedented growth in both transit and transshipment business.
According to the KPA official, transshipment traffic between January and November 2019 recorded 197,272 teus up from 105,333 teus registered in the same period in 2018.
The MD said “this represents a growth of 87.3 percent, the highest performance at the port and we expect to handle over 200,000 teus by the end of the year.”
He attributed the performance in transshipment sector to the provision of adequate yard space as a result of the construction of the second container terminal, streamlining of the handling process by cargo interveners and marketing efforts with shipping lines.
By Mohamed Hassan