Tanga. The Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) is in the process of developing a modern jetty at Raskazone in Tanga City to accommodate petroleum product tankers of AFRAMAX size - from 80,000 to 100,000 Dead Weight (DWT).
This was revealed by Tanga Port manager Percival Salama in Tanga today when he briefed a delegation of Ugandan oil and gas stakeholders who visited Tanga to explore possibilities of using the Tanzania routes and ports in importing and transporting petroleum products.
Salama told the delegation led by the principal Transport Economist in Uganda’s ministry of Works and Transport, Mr Gerald Ekinu, that the project was currently at the stage of engaging a consultant, following the successful completion of a geotechnical survey.
Salama said that a total of 702,965.660 metric tonnes of petroleum products were handled at the Tanga Port and the number of tankers through the Tanga Port totaled 31.
He pointed out that the Raskazone facility was located offshore at the Raskazone peninsula, consisting of three mooring buoys, which is designed to handle oil tanker ships of up to 183 metres in length overall (LOA) with carrying capacity DWT of 45,000 metric metres.
He said that under a special arrangement, it could allow berthing of vessels measuring more than 183 metres. “Recently, the facility managed to anchor a vessel with length overall 220 carrying petroleum products for Zambia,” he said.
He added that by 2020, Tanga would be the only port allowing ships weighing from 100,000 to 200,000 tonnes to dock at the facility after expansion.
He said, however, that the Raskazone receiving depot or the oil products was owned by the Gulf Bulk Petroleum (GBP).
The port manager said that Uganda had a better chance of making Tanga the port of choice due to its potential to use a short time to load and offload cargo (two and a half days for 45,000 metric tonne tankers) with chances to avoid demurrage charges.
Speaking after the visit, Ekinu said they were impressed by the performance of the port and efforts to revive railway transport, which he said could reduce the costs of transporting oil fro and to Uganda.
He also spoke about the need for harmonisation of standards to have seamless movement of goods, citing regulations in charges. “There should not be barriers in transporting goods to and from any East African countries,” he said.
A representative of the Tanzania Railway Corporation, Mr Focus Sahani, said that the corporation had embarked on the rehabilitation of the Tanga – Arusha railway line in a bid to support the development of the Tanga Port.