Transnet details expansion plans for its container terminals
IOL Business - Apr 5th 2012, 10:26
Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) has committed capital expenditure of R33 billion over the next seven years for expansion projects to meet growing demand.
The port terminal division, which provides cargo-handling services at the seven South African ports, said yesterday that the investments were part of Transnet’s market demand strategy (MDS) announced by President Jacob Zuma in his state of the nation address earlier this year. This strategy would help drive the R300bn infrastructure fund for the rail, ports and pipeline projects.
Yesterday, TPT chief executive Karl Socikwa said: “The MDS has major implications for our division’s responsibility to facilitate unconstrained growth, unlock demand and create world-class port operations through improved efficiencies.”
Terminals officials allocated 71 percent of the expenditure to expansion projects and the remaining 29 percent to capital sustaining projects.
“The latter included the replacement of ageing equipment as well as the refurbishment of existing equipment.”
In a detailed outline, TPT said R9.8bn would be allocated to container terminals.
This would include increasing the capacity of the Durban Container Terminal (DCT) Pier 1 from 700 000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) to 820 000 TEUs and to a projected 1.2 million TEUs by 2016/17.
Extension of the north quay at DCT Pier 2 would help increase the capacity from 2.1 million TEUs to 2.5 million TEUs in 2013/14, and to 3.3 million TEUs by 2018.
“This entails an acceleration of our capacity creation programme at all our major terminals, to ensure we are able to grow the economy and make the ports as competitive and efficient as possible,” he said.
The new Ngqura Container Terminal would be expanded to accommodate more containers, from 800 000 TEUs to 2 million by 2019, to meet the anticipated volumes.
Some R22.7bn had been allocated to bulk terminals, including the iron ore bulk facility in Saldahna, which would process more ore, from 60 million tons a year to 82 million tons a year.
This would include an addition in the creation of a manganese capacity by relocating the export facility from Port Elizabeth to the Port of Ngqura.
This, TPT said, would create capacity of 12 million tons a year from 2017.
Richards Bay Terminal would also be refurbished and re-engineered to create more space for bulk products. Break-bulk terminals would receive about R300 million.
Socikwa said: “These investments into South Africa’s commercial port operations will continue to provide a springboard for growth. We will implement specific initiatives to grow volumes and use capacity as it comes on stream, while improving operational efficiencies and growing personnel, thus ensuring the success of the market demand strategy.”
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