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Even while TPT demonstrated commendable performance once again this week, unfavourable weather conditions, equipment difficulties, and shortages continued to limit port operations. This week, the Port of Cape Town experienced very few delays; in Durban, ongoing equipment failures were the main cause of operating challenges. While marine equipment problems assured significant operational delays at the Port of Richards Bay, high seas and unfavourable weather guaranteed delays in operations in the Eastern Cape. There were not many updates from TFR this week, but the yearly shutdown of TFR was in full force, with train services between Durban and the Reef starting up again on February 16.

Key Notes:

  • An average of ~7 827 containers was handled per day, with ~8 103 containers projected for next week.
  • TNPA stats for January: containers: down by ↓2% (m/m) but up by ↑7% (y/y). Total bulk: down by ↓10% (m/m)
    and up by ↑1% (y/y). Vehicles trade is up by ↑8% (m/m), but down by a massive ↓42% (y/y).
  • Cross-border queue times were ↓1,0 hours (w/w), with transit times ↓0,7 hours (w/w); SA borders increased
    by ~1,2 hours, averaging ~11,8 hours (↑11%); Other SADC borders averaged ~6,5 hours (↑10%).
  • The GEP Global Supply Chain Volatility Index increased to ↓0,12 in January from ↓0,44 in December.
  • Global freight rates have again decreased this week – by ↓1,4%, or $53 to $3 733 per 40-ft container.
  • International air cargo volumes were way down last week (↓12%), as rates are up to $2,39 per kg).

Port operations – General:

  • Despite another week of some praiseworthy performance by TPT, port operations this week were still constrained by adverse weather conditions accompanied by equipment challenges and shortages.
  • Minimal delays were reported at the Port of Cape Town this week, while continuous equipment
    breakdowns were the primary source of operational difficulties in Durban.
  • High swells and adverse weather ensured operational delays in the Eastern Cape, while marine equipment challenges ensured extensive operational delays at the Port of Richards Bay.
  • Minimal reports were received from TFR this week; however, the TFR annual shutdown was in full swing this week, with train services between Durban and the Reef resuming on 16 February.

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