Dar port eyes higher goal, ups efficiency

What you need to know:

  • Currently, goods in transit account for 70 percent of all goods passing through the Port of Dar es Salaam.

Dar es Salaam. Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) is banking on technology and modern equipment it seeks to up the efficiency of the Port of Dar es Salaam and turn the country into a logistics hub in East and Central Africa.
TPA director general, Mr Eric Hamissi, said yesterday that so far the progress has been encouraging as the vessel turnaround improves significantly at the Dar es Salaam port.
“We used to receive a maximum of 50 vessels in the past, but in November, we received  77 of them. The number fell slightly to 67 in December. January numbers are also encouraging as off today already 19 vessels have unloaded its cargos and continue with other destinations,” he said.
He was speaking in Dar es Salaam when the deputy minister for Works and Transport, Mr Atupele Mwakibete, visited the port as part of his familiarisation tour. According to Mr Hamissi, the target is to handle 18 million tonnes of cargo this financial year, out of which, over 50 percent has already been achieved so far.
 “We have a target of collecting Sh1 trillion and so far, we have managed Sh508 billion already and we have already handled 9.1 million tonnes of cargo,” he said.
Currently, goods in transit account for 70 percent of all goods passing through the Port of Dar es Salaam.
“We are investing more in new technologies to achieve our goals…in a day we work on up to five vessels,” he said.
In his remarks, Mr Mwakibete said the government has injected a lot of resources in the ports, calling upon TPA management to ensure that it the outcomes of the investment are vividly seen.
“We have already released Sh500 billion for infrastructure and modern equipment…Though the results are encouraging, TPA should keep investing in Informational Communication Technology (ICT) to further up efficiency,” he said.
TPA, he said, could also to send its members of staff to learn new skills in the countries that were doing well in port operations such as Singapore and China.
He said it was the government’s view that the business opportunities in neighbouring countries that come with Tanzania’s strategic geographical location, could be fully utilised with an improvement in Dar es Salaam port efficiency which must be aided by technology.
In November last year, the Dar es Salaam Port got a major boost as it started receiving modern work equipment purchased at a cost of  Sh210 billion that the government had set aside for the purpose.