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Ports, Transport and Logistics Sector News Round-Up, 9/2020 (25 – 6 June)

15 June 2020
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In light of the rapid pace of infrastructure and transport developments across Africa, our Ports, Transport and Logistics (PTL) Sector Group is pleased to present Bowmans’ latest PTL news round-up. Our regular round-ups bring you a selection of pan-African PTL-related stories and keep you up to date regarding developments in the space across Africa.

We draw on a network of multi-disciplinary experts across Africa in fields as diverse as project finance, construction and environmental law, to keep you in the know about developments and thought leadership in the PTL space.

The articles to which we refer readers are, unless stated otherwise, neither written nor edited by ourselves and appear in their original form. Bowmans does not necessarily agree with opinions expressed in those articles.

This edition includes news headlines and links to articles from a variety of sources, covering stories from Angola, Benin, DRC, Ethiopia, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

For Coronavirus (Covid-19) related updates from South Africa…

Please see our dedicated ports and shipping web page for details of Covid-19 related regulatory changes, directions and updates in South Africa since 16 March. We also have a page dedicated to aviation regulatory changes, directions and updates.

Other news continues below…

Several energy projects in the pipeline (Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (5 June 2020)
Several projects earmarked for East Africa are of critical importance to the region and will not only bring about change, but much-needed growth and development. Read the full article here.

Concerns raised over post-Covid resources to resume projects (Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan and Tanzania)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (4 June 2020)
The collapse of global economic activity and the move to more protectionist policies could a have severe impact on trade and development in East Africa. Read the full article here.

North-south corridor borders quiet – for now (DRC, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (4 June 2020)
The hinterland border posts of Zambia appear to be functioning well – for now – following last week’s violent upheaval at Kasumbalesa, unprecedented volumes of truck traffic passing through the country’s Chirundu border with Zimbabwe, and a recent spike in Covid-19 confirmations at the Nakonde border into Tanzania. Read the full article here.

Uganda backs away from mandatory use of Standard Gauge Railway (Kenya and Uganda)
Source: Africa Ports (4 June 2020)
After initially having gone along with the decision that all cargo coming from the port at Mombasa must be railed as far as the standard gauge railhead at Naivasha, Uganda now says this should not be mandatory but optional to cargo owners. Read the full article here.

Svitzer anchors position in Africa: Nacala and Egyptian LNG contracts strengthen position (Egypt and Mozambique)
Source: Africa Ports (3 June 2020)
Svitzer has taken an important couple of steps towards strengthening its presence in Africa by signing a five-year contract with Nacala Logistics in Mozambique for harbour towage, occasional pilot transfer and potential salvage work in the Port of Nacala. Read the full article here.

Study shows rate of improvements through ICT at the port of Cotonou (Benin)
Source: Africa Ports (2 June 2020)
Maritime and port activities are becoming increasingly facilitated by communication and information technologies (ICT). Read the full article here.

Private operators keen on Grootfontein railhead (Angola, DRC, Namibia and Zambia)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (29 May 2020)
TransNamib’s plans to establish a dry port at Grootfontein are gaining traction through support from logistics companies and hauliers. Read the full article here.

Larger vessels call on Walvis Bay (Namibia)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (29 May 2020)
Investment in a new deep-sea container terminal by the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) is attracting a new class of larger container vessels. Read the full article here.

South and East Africa border crossings congested by Covid-19 (Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (29 May 2020)
Backlogging build-up at border crossings across east and southern Africa continued today as customs personnel across the continent continued to test long-distance drivers for the coronavirus, with truck queues getting longer as more rigs joined the line. Read the full article here.

Specialised dry-type transformers for Saldanha port upgrade (South Africa)
Source: Creamer Media’s Engineering News (28 May 2020)
Transnet’s upgrade of its port facility at Saldanha Bay will include dry-type transformers that are specially manufactured to suit the conditions at the project. Read the full article here.

Covid-19 could put the brakes on AfCFTA implementation (International)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (28 May 2020)
As the July 1 deadline looms for the conclusion of negotiations on tariff offers and rules of origin ahead of the launch of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), several commentators believe that the date should be postponed. Read the full article here.

New air charter solution helps address capacity shortfall (South Africa)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (28 May 2020)
A new initiative designed to address the shortage of air freight capacity created by the Covid-19 pandemic is fast gaining traction in the freight industry. Read the full article here.

Long delays for SA/Mozambique truckers at Lebombo Border Crossing (Mozambique and South Africa)
Source: Africa Ports (27 May 2020)
Truck drivers arriving at the border crossings between South Africa and Mozambique (Lebombo and Ressano Garcia respectively) face lengthy delays and considerable discomfort and inconvenience. Read the full article here.

Tema Terminal 3 sets new record of 111.4 container moves an hour (Ghana)
Source: Africa Ports (27 May 2020)
Friday, 15 May 2020, was a red-letter day in performance when Meridian Port Service (MPS) Terminal 3 achieved a new record for Ghanaian ports – and which may cover most other sub-Saharan Africa ports – by exceeding the symbolic gross 100 moves per hour. Read the full article here.

Transnet reports recovery in some units, but still expects big Covid-19 revenue hit (South Africa)
Source: Creamer Media’s Engineering News (26 May 2020)
State-owned freight logistics group Transnet reports that there has been a recovery in some of its operations since the easing of lockdown restrictions and is increasingly tending towards an “optimistic” recovery scenario for many of its units – a scenario that assumes a ramp-up to full operations by January 2021 and a revenue reduction of R6-billion for the financial year. Read the full article here.

Port pressure threatens China’s BRI ambitions (International)
Source: Southern Africa’s Freight News by FTW (26 May 2020)
Rising opposition from the US, Israel, Sri Lanka and Australia against China could result in the latter losing control of two external ports and forfeiting a deal that would secure a third outside its own territory. Read the full article here.

Mossel Bay, SA’s smallest port, playing critical role with essential services (South Africa)
Source: Africa Ports (26 May 2020)
From the commencement of the national lockdown on 27 March 2020, South Africa’s smallest port, Mossel Bay, has continued to play a critical role in the provision of essential services, in particular in the fishing and oil and gas sectors. Read the full article here.

Port of Takoradi oil jetty nears completion (Ghana)
Source: Africa Ports (26 May 2020)
A US$56 million oil jetty, built out into the harbour at the Port of Takoradi in Ghana, is nearing completion. Read the full article here.

Kenya enforces rule that transit cargo must go by rail (Kenya)
Source: Africa Ports (26 May 2020)
The date of 1 June has been set by when all transit cargo must move by Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) between the port of Mombasa and the inland depot at Naivasha. Read the full article here.

COVID-19 brings congestion & blockages to Nigerian ports (Nigeria)
Source: Africa Ports (25 May 2020)
Restrictions and the lockdown regulations across Nigeria have brought blockages and added congestion to the country’s seaports, according to reports received. Read the full article here.