Port R1.34bn injection

Posted On Saturday, 04 August 2001 03:01 Published by
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DURBAN's port handles about 65% of the country's containerised traffic and is strategically located to serve both the immediate hinterland and the industrial and commercial hub of Gauteng.

R1,34bn injection for port. BD 4 Sept 2001

DURBAN's port handles about 65% of the country's containerised traffic and is strategically located to serve both the immediate hinterland and the industrial and commercial hub of Gauteng.
Portnet recently unveiled plans for a R1,34bn upgrade to the container-handling facilities, and a consolidation of the general cargo handling capacity.
It aims to meet the existing and future demands of its customers through three components of the Port of Durban Development 2005 project.
The plans confirm the port of Durban as the premier container handling facility in Africa.
The vision is long term. Phase one comprises a R507m investment in three new quayside cranes and 20 new straddle carriers, the replacement of equipment in the existing container terminal and infrastructural improvements.
This will raise capacity in the container terminal from 1,3-million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) to 1,6-million TEUs a year.
The rationale for the upgrade is to support the continued growth in container traffic at the port, which is fast approaching full capacity. Since the container terminal was developed in 1977 the facility has consistently achieved high growth rates in container volumes.
This has grown exponentially since SA returned to the international fold, placing heavy demands on facilities in the port.
Tau Morwe, Portnet port operations division CEO, says year-onyear growth since 1994 averaged 8%, with an 18% increase in container traffic recorded last year.
Growth is expected to continue in line with international trends.
He says the upgrade will only cater for capacity requirements in the port over the next few years, and further capacity will have to be accommodated through the conversion of Pier 1 for container handling.
The second component is the R564,5m development of the city terminal. This will provide new deep-water quays, remodel the terminal infrastructure and layout and provide new and replacement equipment.
Morwe says this component will consolidate the general cargo handling operations, creating a balance between container and breakbulk operations.
Phase three is a R273m conversion of Pier 1 for container handling and involves both the conversion of infrastructure and the acquisition of new equipment. This will add another 325000 TEUs to the annual container-handling capacity.
Siyabonga Gama, CEO of the Portnet port authority division, says the decision to convert Pier 1 hinged on good rail and road access to the area and allowed for optimal use of support facilities.
The investment is expected to have a multiplier effect on the city's economy, creating thousands of jobs during and after construction. It also supports the unicity's longterm development strategy.


Publisher: Business Day
Source: Business Day

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