Mombasa Port Inches Closer to Historic Target
High Record Containerized Imported Cargo
The Port of Mombasa looks set to achieve a record high of its containerised imported cargo in a year as it is only short of about 200,000 twenty feet equivalent units (TEUs) to hit the 1.35 million TEUs target this year, according to latest Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) data.
The port recorded 1. 12 million TEUs by the end of October, 110,086 TEUs more than the same period last year.
Data indicate increased cargo handling in both transit and transshipment in what is being attributed to heavy investment at the port, including new Container Terminal 2 (CT2) which has special transshipment berth and modern cargo handling facilities.
The port handled 179,910 TEUs at berth 21 which is designated for transshipment compared to 92,987 TEUs the same period last year, and indication of more than 93 percent increase. Efficiency at the port has also seen transshipment conventional cargo increase by more than 125 percent from 942,000 metric tonnes last year to 2. 124 million metric tonnes as at October this year.
The port is expected to make more profit this year with the increase of transshipment considering the authority earn double fees per cargo unlike transit. “Whenever we handle transshipment cargo, we usually charge double fee for offloading and loading thus whenever we see increase of such cargo, we know we are in business,” said KPA head of container operations Edward Opiyo in an earlier interview.
Modern cargo handling cranes, acquisition of modern equipment to improvements in documentation and clearance processes as well as automation of container handling processes worth billions of shilling has yielded fruits which has seen good performance reported in this year. Cumulatively, the port registered a total of 28,728 metric tonnes throughput by October this year up from 26,035 metric tonnes last year same time with a target of 33,580 tonnes in the next two months.
In the weekly report until the end of 11 December 2019, it indicated that KPA dispatched an average of 52 Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) freight trains to carry the cargo from Mombasa to Nairobi Inland Container Depot with the week ended in November 20 recording the highest number of trains at 65. SGR remained the main mode of transport of all cargo heading to Nairobi and other hinterland despite protest from truckers and introduction of ex-hook railage has helped the port to manage the yard population hence reducing congestion. In September, the port of Mombasa crossed its one million mark with more East African countries willing to trade with the port.