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Port efficiency concerns remain in South Africa

Following the Western Cape government's concerns regarding the slow recovery of the Cape Town port in anticipation of a busy citrus export season, Transnet Port Terminals reassured that its Cape Town Container Terminal was progressing according to the recovery plan.

Despite these assurances, Premier Alan Winde and MEC Mireille Wenger highlighted that the terminal had not met its recovery targets, emphasizing the collaborative efforts between the industry, provincial government, and Transnet to establish a reliable recovery plan. With an expected surge in citrus exports, concerns about the port's capacity to efficiently process and ship goods have intensified. The port's performance, particularly its ship working hours and container moves per hour, falls short of set targets, raising doubts about its readiness for the upcoming export peak.

The Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism noted that the majority of exports are destined for the EU, with a significant portion of South Africa's citrus exports passing through Cape Town. The inefficiencies at the Cape Town port have been a recurring concern, with government officials voicing frustration over unmet commitments to address these issues. Transnet cited weather-related disruptions as contributing factors to the port's challenges, but affirmed efforts to manage the increased demand for citrus exports.

Transnet Port Terminals claims situation has improved
Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) has reported an increase in the volumes of goods handled across its ports in the first six weeks of the 2024/2025 financial year. Transnet announced on Friday that its container volumes had risen 10%, while bulk volumes and break-bulk volumes had increased by 5% and 17%, respectively, for the period as a result of its staff's commitment to the group's turnaround strategy.

TPT chief executive Jabu Mdaki said that compared to the last financial year, which ended on March 31, 2023, South Africa's ports were showing signs of recovery. "We are doing our best to move more volumes despite our shortfalls on equipment and ultimately, key performance indicators."


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