TANZANIA Ports Authority (TPA) management has pledged to modernise and make Dar es Salaam Port more competitive, to effectively serve countries in the East, Central and Southern Africa.
The Authority’s Acting Director General, Mr Awadh Massawe, made the promise in Dar es Salaam just after the visit of presidents Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania and Paul Kagame of Rwanda at the Port, recently.
“The Port has continued to be a major entry hub for our country and our neighbours,” he told journalists over the weekend.
Armed with data and statistics, the Director General said that in 2014, Dar es Salaam Port served 630,000 tonnes of cargo for Rwanda compared to 213,000 tonnes served by Mombasa port for the same country.
Tanzania also served 1,500,000 tonnes of cargo for the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) while Mombasa had only 437,000 tonnes of cargo for DRC during the same period.
According to Massawe, the statistics and experience indicate how neighbouring countries have their confidence and faith in Dar Port following major transformations that are still ongoing. He said that no container or any kind of cargo has been lost in the past three years.
“These positive changes have started to bear fruits,” he said, adding that the average waiting time for ships to offload is one and a half hour compared to 28 hours in the past seven years.
Dar port serves seven neighbouring countries which include DRC, Zambia, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Malawi and Zimbabwe.
TPA board Chairperson, Prof Joseph Msambichaka said: “35 per cent of cargo passing here is transit… we are determined to offer best services,” adding that well functioning Central and TAZARA railway lines will help improve the Port’s services.
“When all cargo starts being transported by rail as planned by the government, this port will tremendously improve,” he explained.
However, the Board Chairman did not hesitate to commend the TPA management for innovative and hard work that has also seen local and foreign port users having confidence with the Port.
“Every one of us has witnessed people talking tall on major developments and transformations currently taking place at the Port,” Prof Msambichaka said.
Source: Tanzania Daily News
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