TRADE BOOST

Mombasa port cargo up 10.7 per cent in last three months

Facility handled 9.54 million tonnes of cargo compared to 8.62 million tonnes in a similar period last year.

In Summary

• The port received 389,515 containers compared with 340,812 containers handled last year, which is an increase of 48,703.

• In March, the port handled 133,904 TEUs, which is an increase of 31,261 TEUs or 30.4 per compared to last year’s 102,643 TEUs.

The Port of Mombasa has continued to register improved performance despite the unprecedented disruption of global maritime trade by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the first quarter of 2021, the port handled 9.54 million tonnes of cargo compared to 8.62 million tonnes in a similar period last year. This is a 10.7 per cent growth.

According to Kenya Ports Authority acting managing director Rashid Salim, between January and March container traffic grew by 14.3 per cent.

They received 389,515 Total Equivalent Units (TEUs) compared to 340,812 TEUs handled last year, which is an increase of 48,703 TEUs.

For March only, the port of Mombasa handled 133,904 TEUs, which is an increase of 31,261 TEUs or 30.4 percent compared to last year’s 102,643 TEUs.

In transshipment business, container traffic grew by 68.4 per cent between January and March. The port handled 69,658 TEUs against 41,363 TEUs during the corresponding period in 2020, which was a growth of 28,295 TEUs.

In a statement to newsrooms on Thursday, Salim said the import volume for the first three months of 2021 went up by 6.9 per cent.

“Total imports during the quarter recorded 162,504 TEUs up from 151,998 TEUs in the corresponding period January-March 2020,” he said.

Equally, he said, exports registered an upsurge by 6.8 per cent from 146,049 TEUs in 2020 to 156,007 TEUs during a similar period in 2021.

According to Salim, last month the port of Mombasa registered growth in both conventional and containerised cargo, whereby a total of 3.48 million tons were recorded.

Last year in March, the port handled 2.71 tons, recording a growth of 768,453 tons or 28.4 per cent.

“The performance was mainly attributed to an increase in handling of wheat and clinker cargo within the month compared to the same period in 2020,” he said.

Salim said February 2021 has been captured as the highest performer ever in terms of daily average container throughput traffic.

They registered 4,662 TEUs beating the record daily average throughput of 4,279 TEUs recorded in July 2019.

Last month, KPA transferred 25,104 TEUs through the standard gauge railway freight trains. They were doing an average of 8.32 trains per day.

In February, they were doing an average of 8.1 trains.

On Monday, KPA said they had 90 per cent occupancy of all its 21 berths.

A total of 44 vessels are expected to call the Port of Mombasa in the next two weeks, with 29 vessels expected to have called by the end of this week.

Edited by Henry Makori