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This week’s port operations were mostly hampered by bad weather, vessel ranging, equipment failures, and shortages. Strong winds and vessel range at Cape Town resulted in the loss of almost thirty operational hours. Dredging and sounding activities, together with equipment shortages and malfunctions, accounted for most of the delays in Durban at the same time. This week, our Eastern Cape ports experienced operational delays due to vessel ranging and unfavorable weather. A terminal operation agreement for a new R1,1 billion liquid bulk terminal that will be constructed at the Port of Durban has also been signed by TNPA and Mnambithi Liquid Bulk Terminals. On May 29, 2024, National Election Day, all provided services would proceed as usual, according to TNPA. Furthermore, according to the most recent TPT records, one of the longest trains on our rail system arrived at DCT Pier 2 from Limpopo with 48 forty-foot containers filled with citrus fruit that were meant for export markets.

Key Notes:

  • An average of ~7 945 containers was handled per day, with ~8 176 containers projected for next week.
  • TNPA stats for April: containers: down by ↓26% (m/m) and down by ↓12% (y/y). Total bulk: down by ↓10% (m/m) but up by ↑10% (y/y). Vehicle trade is up by ↓1% (m/m) but down by ↓15% (y/y).
  • Cross-border queue: ↓6,0 hrs; transit: ↓2,4 hrs; SA borders: 7,0 hrs (↓38%); SADC borders: 0,5 hrs (↓85%).
  • Rail cargo handled out of Durban was reported at 2 904 containers, up ↑17% from last week.
  • Global freight rates have increased by another significant ↑16% (or $561) to $4 702 per 40-ft container.
  • Global air cargo increased by ↑2%, continuing a recovery from an ↓8% decline at the beginning of May.

Port operations – General:

  • Port operations this week were primarily constrained by adverse weather, vessel ranging, equipment breakdowns, and -shortages.
  • Over 30 operational hours were lost in Cape Town due to strong winds and vessel range.
  • At the same time, equipment breakdowns and shortages, coupled with dredging and sounding operations, constituted the majority of delays in Durban.
  • This week, vessel ranging and adverse weather ensured operational delays at our Eastern Cape Ports.
  • Further, TNPA and Mnambithi Liquid Bulk Terminals have signed a terminal operation agreement for a new R1,1 billion liquid bulk terminal that will be built at the Port of Durban.
  • At the same time, TNPA indicated that all rendered services will continue as normal on National Election Day, 29 May 2024.
  • Additionally, the latest reports from TPT suggest that one of the longest trains on our rail network arrived at DCT Pier 2 from Limpopo, carrying 48 forty-foot containers of citrus fruit destined for export markets.

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