Dar port dwell time target elusive

Tuesday May 22 2018

Cargo movement at Dar es Salaam Port. Ugandan

Cargo movement at Dar es Salaam Port. Ugandan traders are looking at the Dar port as Kenyan election close in. PHOTO|FILE 

By Rosemary Mirondo @mwaikama rmirondo@tz.nationmedia.co

Dar es Salaam. The average dwell time for local containers for the last five years at the Dar es Salaam Port has missed the five-day target set by the Big Results Now (BRN), the Annual Performance Monitoring Report 2017 shows.

The report, Promoting Efficiency in Transport, Logistics Value Chain and Trade in the Region for April 2018, revealed that the average dwell time in 2013 was 9.94 days, 7.74 days in 2014, 3.58 days in 2015, 3.73 days in 2016 and 5.58 days in 2017.

“This shows that according to BRN’s target of five days, the local dwell time in 2015 and 2016 met the target, but there was an increase in 2017,” according to the report.

The average transit container dwell time continued to decrease from 2013 to 2016, but records shows that it increased hugely in 2017.

The averages recorded are 12.1 days, 11.7 days, 8.84 days, 8.82 days and 12.08 days from 2013 to 2017 respectively.

The report suggests that a brief survey should be conducted to find out what caused an increase on average for transit dwell time in 2017 and why the set target has been unattainable.

When comparing 2016 and 2017, an increase of 3.26 days was observed, which is equivalent to a 37 per cent increase.

According to the report, the rise in dwell time may have been caused by increased transit cargo at the Dar es Salaam Port in 2017, delays caused by duties payment under the Single Customs Territory (SCT) as well as extended grace period to 30 days versus 14 days for other transit cargo and seven days for local cargo.

The average container dwell time for the Tanzania International Container Terminal Services (Ticts) between 2008 and 2017 shows that they almost hit the BRN target in 2016, but the following year an increase of 6.3 per cent was recorded.

The average Ticts transit container dwell time is steadily decreasing from the past years when importers and exporters had to wait for 29 days to clear their cargo.

The company, which is the largest container terminal in the country, recorded a transit dwell time of 13.86 days in 2017. It was a slight increase compared to 2016 when an increase of 2.25 days, which is equivalent to 19.4 per cent, was recorded.

Meanwhile, the Ticts Import Overall Container Average Dwell Time had been going down since 2008 to 2017.

It has been observed that in 2017, there was a slight increase in dwell time compared to 2016 (2.85 days), which reflects an increase of 31.2 per cent.

The figures are produced after the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) makes release time calculations.

The authority provides average time in hours that elapse from when declaration is made by clearing and forwarding agent until when the release order is issued by customs.

The average time in hours for the three years 2015, 2016 and 2017 is 50.77, 57.997 and 64.62 respectively.

This shows that the release time was increasing from 2015 to 2017.

The increase may have been registered because of emphasis on compulsory scanning and physical verification of cargo at the port for local cargo.

In addition, uncoordinated communication through e-mails between different revenues authorities under SCT leads to delays.