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Cargo surges by 12pc in Mombasa

By Reuben Mwambingu
Thursday, July 22nd, 2021 00:00 | 2 mins read
The Port of Mombasa. Photo/PD/FILE

The port of Mombasa handled 18.333 million tonnes cargo throughput against 16.394 million tons registered in the corresponding period in 2020 representing a notable growth of 11.8 per cent.

Kenya Port Authority says the remarkable growth between January and June 2021 surpassed the forecasted target by 0.5 per cent.

According to incoming Managing Director Ambassador John Mwangemi, total containers registered a 15.3 per cent increase to record 754,148 Twenty foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) in 2021 up from 654,054 TEUs registered in a similar period in 2020.

Transhipment

He further noted that transshipment traffic grew by a remarkable 55.9 percent to record 125,141 TEUs compared to 80,278 TEUs witnessed in 2020.

“However, during the period under review, there was a decline in terms of transit traffic, which dropped by 5.4 per cent, having registered 4.73 million tons in 2021 against 5 million tons recorded in 2020. 

The negative performance is attributed to the decreased handling of cargo for Uganda and Rwanda by 208,811 tons or 5.5 percent and 119,702 tons or 57.4 percent, respectively,” he said.

In the case of Uganda, Mwangemi said this was attributed to the general elections held in the country, resurgence of COVID-19 in the region and the resultant economic lockdowns in both Uganda and Rwanda.

“The reduction in the regional economic activity is projected to continue into the next quarter of the year.

However, we look forward to increased business volumes in the remaining half of the calendar year,” said Mwangemi.

The authority intends to invest an estimated Sh 4 billion on modern equipment to make the three berths at the Lamu Port fully operational by April 2022.

Executives from major oil traders said on Tuesday they expected prices to remain above $70 (Sh7,560) and demand to return to pre-pandemic levels in the second half of 2022.

At the same time, the prospect of an imminent rise in Iranian oil exports looks less likely, analysts said. Indirect talks between Tehran and Washington on resuming the 2015 nuclear accord resumed in Vienna on Saturday.

Reuben Mwambingu