Wheat, clinker see Port register 10 per cent growth in first quarter cargo traffic

The Port of Mombasa has registered a 10.7 per cent growth rate in cargo handled in the first quarter of 2021 to 9.54 million tonnes from 8.62 million tonnes recorded at the same stage last year, fresh data from the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) shows.

Container traffic volumes in the period stood at 389,515 twenty-foot equivalent containers (TEUs) from 340,812 TEUs handled in 2020.

Transshipment traffic recorded 69,658 TEUs against 41,363 TEUs during the corresponding period last year, KPA note says.

The improved Port performance is attributable to an increase in the handling of wheat and clinker cargo within the month compared to the corresponding quarter last year.

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The container traffic translates to an uptick of 14.3 per cent or 48,703 TEUs growth while transshipment traffic went up by 28,295 TEUs or 68.4 per cent.

Total imports during the quarter through the Port recorded 162,504 TEUs up from 151,998 TEUs in the corresponding period January-March 2020, registering a growth of 6.9 per cent.

Equally, Kenya exports through the Port of Mombasa surged by 6.8 per cent to 156,007 TEUs from 146,049 TEUs recorded during a similar period in 2020.

The month of March boosted the Port’s performance, registering a marked growth in both conventional and containerized cargo. 

A total of 3.48 million tonnes were recorded in the month of March against 2.71 million tonnes recorded during the corresponding month in 2020, representing a 28.4 per cent growth to 768,453 tonnes.

For container traffic, the Port recorded a 30.4 per cent increment to register 133,904 TEUs in March against 102,643 TEUs witnessed in the corresponding period last year.

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KPA acting managing director, Rashid Salim, noted that the Port performed best in February in terms of daily average container throughput traffic at with 4,662 TEUs handled, beating the record daily average throughput of 4,279 TEUs posted in July 2019.

Mr Salim added that for Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), March will go on record as the highest ever with 25,104 TEUs handled, which is an average of 8.32 trains per day, surpassing the previous daily record average of 8.1 trains recorded in February last year.

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