Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) has lined up three major infrastructural projects in the line to its commitment to the implementation of Mombasa Port Community Charter (MPCC) signed in 2013 by 25 government and non-governmental agencies.
Scheduled for construction in June this year is the development of Phase II of the second container terminal, which will increase Mombasa port cargo handling capacity by 450,000 Twenty Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs). The first phase created a capacity of 550,000 TEUs.
Japanese firm Toyo Construction co. was picked to carry out the work. On completion, the second container terminal is expected to hand the port of Mombasa a total additional capacity of 1.5 Million TEUs annually. Phase one included the construction of two large berths measuring 250m and 300 m.
Also scheduled for June this year kick-off are the construction of a new modern and bigger oil terminal to replace the aging Kipevu Oil Terminal (KOT) and the construction of a modern cruise terminal at berth No. 1 and 2 to complement tourism.
The oil jetty near Dongo Kundu will handle tankers with deadweight of up to 200,000 tonnes compared to the existing terminal, which can handle vessels carrying up to 80,000 tonnes and will be linked to the new jetty via an undersea pipeline. Danish engineering firm Niras, which designed the jetty at a cost of $1.7 million, will supervise its construction.
The Kipevu terminal was built in 1963 and lacks capacity to meet East Africa’s demand for oil products currently at 450 million litres a month. The new jetty also seeks to address safety concerns because the existing terminal is sandwiched between berths that handle container cargo.
The new terminal will have a two-way crude oil pipeline linked to the Kipevu oil storage facility. The facility will have space for 326 million litres of fuel but its operational capacity will be 269 million litres.
A total of 4 berths have been provided for and three will be built in the first phase. The berths will have the capacity to handle all petroleum products currently imported for the region as well as LPG.
Cruise terminal is expected to be completed this year and will boost cruise tourism in the country. The aim of building a cruise facility at the Port of Mombasa is to support the government’s efforts to revamp tourism, for economic growth and creation of jobs.
The works, which began in December 2016, involve the modernisation of an old building at the port’s berth number 1. When completed, the terminal would have arrival and departure areas for passengers coming through the sea at the Port of Mombasa.
The facility will also have a lounge for passengers, an immigration office, reception counters for cruise operators, restaurants and souvenir shops.
“I can positively confirm that cargo volumes through the port have been growing, and as much we are not shying away from patting ourselves on the back, we unreservedly acknowledge the significant role of the charter in this development,” a senior port official told a workshop in Mombasa
In the last five years, the compounded annual cargo growth rates at the port stood at 8 per cent for total throughput and 7.4 per cent for containerized traffic, which was way above the global rate of 3 per cent.
Due to the efficiency that has been seen in the last five years, Mombasa port remains a gateway to East and Central Africa with over forty shipping lines calling at the port.
Last year, the port of Mombasa recorded a significant increase in total cargo throughput with a growth of 10.9 percent from 27.36 million tons in 2016 to 30.35 million tons in 2017.
Container traffic registered an impressive performance with an increase of 98,586 TEUs or 9.0 percent from 1.091 million TEUs handled in 2016 to 1.190 million TEUs in 2017. On the other hand, Transit cargo had a notable increase in performance from 7.75 million tons in 2016 to 8.64 million tons in 2017, posting a growth of 11.5 percent.
Imports grew substantially by 10.8 percent to record 25.60 million tons of cargo in 2017 up from 23.12 million tons in 2016. Exports recorded traffic of 3.79 million tons in 2017 against 3.66 million tons in 2016, a growth of 3.6 percent. The marginal increase was mainly supported by Coffee which increased by 33.3 percent and Tea by 4.1 percent.
For cargo destined to transit markets, the port handled a total of 8,636,605 tons of transit cargo against 7,748,537 tons registered in the same period in 2016, representing an increase of 888,068 tons or 11.5 percent.
Transshipment traffic continued to perform well posting 873,989 tons of cargo compared to 588,524 tons realized in the corresponding period of 2016, representing an increase of 285,465 tons or 48.5 percent.
To remain responsive to shipping and trade trends, KPA has continued to implement elaborate port modernization programs to position the Port of Mombasa as a sea port of choice.
Progress on the construction of the first three berths of Lamu Port under the LAPSSET Corridor is now over 40% complete.