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This week, the customary limitations on operations continued, such as unfavorable weather, equipment malfunctions, and shortages throughout the port system. Strong winds this week cost Cape Town more over twenty-four hours of operating time, and in Durban, most delays were caused by equipment failures. This week’s unfavorable weather also caused difficulties for our ports in the Eastern Cape. Simultaneously, the pilot boat named “Tsitsikamma” remained unaccounted for this week and no anticipated time of return has been disclosed. Furthermore, it appears from the most recent reports that one of the two lines that were impacted by the disaster earlier this week was put back into service in the twenty-four hours between Tuesday and Wednesday. Meanwhile, there were not many reports about the theft and vandalism of cables on our national rail network.

Key Notes:

  • An average of ~7 026 containers was handled per day, with ~7 965 containers projected for next week.
  • Rail cargo handled out of Durban amounted to 2 324 containers, down by ↓6% from last week.
    Cross-border queue times were ↑1,3 hours (w/w), with transit times ↓0,6 hours (w/w); SA borders decreased by ~7,0 hours, averaging ~10,4 hours (↓40%); Other SADC borders averaged ~6,6 hours (↓1%).
  • CTS container volume in October (dry & reefer) is up by ↑0,5% (m/m) but up by ↑9,3% (y/y).
    Global freight rates have sharply increased by ↑5,7% (or $79) to $1 461 per 40-ft container, YTD ~$1 677.
  • Global air cargo tonnage increased by ↑2% (w/w), with rates continuing their trend and up by ↑1%.

Port operations – General:

  • The usual operational constraints persisted this week, including poor weather conditions and equipment challenges and shortages across the entire port system.
  • More than 24 operational hours were lost in Cape Town this week due to strong winds, while equipment breakdowns constituted the majority of delays experienced in Durban.
  • Our Eastern Cape Ports also struggled with adverse weather conditions this week.
  • At the same time, the ‘Tsitsikamma’ pilot boat remained out of commission this week with no estimated time of return communicated yet.
  • Additionally, the latest reports suggest that one of the two lines affected by the derailment earlier this week was returned to service in the 24 hours between Tuesday and Wednesday, while minimal reports were received regarding the cable theft and vandalism situation on our national rail network.

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