Africa PORTS & SHIPS Maritime News

Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002
Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002


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Libra in Cape Town, Sept 2017. Picture: Ian Shiffman, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Libra. Picture: Ian Shiffman

The Lithuanian-flag refrigerated ship LIBRA (5,065-dwt) at Cape Town earlier in September, where she is seen inbound to load frozen fish. Having been on the African coast for some time, we wonder if that wasn’t to discharge frozen fish for onward consignment? Libra was arriving from Mozambique waters, having called at Maputo earlier in the month. The 121-metre long, 17m wide reefer was built in 1991 and is homeported at Klaipeda.    This picture is by Ian Shiffman


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DP World banner, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS Maritime News

DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, has been visiting West African countries to seek new areas for cooperation and development.

Among the countries visited are Senegal, Mali and Ghana.

His most recent visit was to Ghana where he held discussions with the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo which centred on cooperation in customs technology, port operations, freezone development, rail transport and inland container depots as ways to develop trade and support businesses aiming to reach international markets.

Mr. Bin Sulayem highlighted Ghana’s recent agreement with Dubai’s Customs World to supply customs clearing services in the country as an example of making processes more efficient, lowering costs for ports and transport providers and enabling more efficient trade flows.

Customs World acquired West Blue Ghana Ltd in September to provide a national single window and risk management system and will invest in new technologies and training in customs digital platforms as they do in other countries worldwide. DP World says that the implementation of the new systems will be based on a robust risk engine that will improve efficiency in the country’s ports and customs operations and increase government’s revenue and reduce the cost of doing business at the ports.

“Integrating ports, customs, and freezones in Ghana will benefit the country enormously, enabling business to trade faster and more efficiently than ever before. Dubai is a model for the world and we can support developing nations such as Ghana in the long term implementation of such strategies as the recent agreement with Customs World demonstrates,” Sultan Bin Sulayem said.

“Our flagship Jebel Ali port in Dubai is a pioneer with its logistics corridor connecting freezone, port and nearby airport with customs operations and digital processes such as the Dubai Trade portal to enable companies to move their goods. Ghana’s ports and customs systems can make it a regional trade transport and logistics hub and a leader on the continent.”

He said that trade and not just aid is one of the key action points African nations have raised and development of infrastructure and transport connectivity will help considerably. “Trade is a gateway to development and regional cooperation through public private partnerships and will benefit all. Africa is in a unique position in that it has the chance to trade with an untapped market – itself. Countries such as Ghana can help make this ambition a reality given its access to the sea and the fact that 90% of trade in Africa is along its coastline.”

A report by DP World on Africa with the Economist Intelligence Unit said that the impact of trade facilitation on trade flows and costs is real with an estimate that on average a 10% increase in a country’s trade facilitation performance can lead to an increase in trade flows and an 8.3% reduction in trade costs.

Earlier, DP World’s chairman and CEO visited Mali and Senegal where similar discussions were held.

In Mali where he met with Mali President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta to discuss a trade and logistics master plan to unlock the resource rich country’s economic potential, Sultan Bin Sulayem said: “Mali has a long history of trade in gold and agricultural products and though landlocked, has the opportunity to maximise use of its 1,800 kilometres of inland waterways such as the Niger River to connect local farmers and businesses to international markets.

“We have the experience of operating in 40 countries in a wide variety of locations including the management of coastal terminals, inland container depots (ICD’s) and moving cargo on rivers. Our experience in the development of infrastructure and multi-modal transport is proving of value to governments in Africa as they seek to develop the trading capacity of their economies.

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem , appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem

At the start of his travels in West Africa, Mr Bin Sulayem met with Senegalese President Macky Sall to confirm development of infrastructure projects in the country.

The discussions, attended by Prime Minister Mohammed Dionne and senior government officials, confirmed the plan for Port Du Futur with construction to start before the end of 2018 together with agreement on land allocation for the associated freezone. Meanwhile, DP World will also provide a master plan for redevelopment of the old port of Dakar. Other topics included customs and logistics in the country.

Port de Futur will be a multi-purpose port with an economic zone and logistics zone adjacent to new Blaise Diagne International Airport. It allows for the creation of cargo, free movement of goods to support the country’s economic diversification, boosting non-resource exports. It is expected to be one of the most advanced and well organised free zones in Africa and globally using the latest state-of-the-art equipment and technology.

“African nations are determined to develop their infrastructure to encourage trade and the growth of their economies. The region has major trade potential, especially for landlocked nations seeking gateways to the sea and connectivity between them will be key. The size of the region and their populations reinforces the need for multi-modal transport, logistics and customs capabilities across borders and as our business moves the world across 40 countries we have the know-how to help in that mission. In addition, we are already part of Africa’s future sharing our experience on cargo movement across the continent’s supply chain and have the experience to deliver major projects there,” he said.

Across Africa, DP World has operations in Senegal, Egypt, Mozambique, Djibouti, Algeria and Somaliland where it is developing a multi-purpose port project at Berbera. It also secured a 25-year concession to develop and operate a new logistics centre in Kigali, Rwanda.

* Now see Start to be made in 2018 on Senegal’s Port du Futur below


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Port Sudan South Quays Container Terminal. Picture: CHEC, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Port Sudan South Quays Container Terminal. Picture: CHEC

Port workers in the Red Sea’s Port Sudan, which handles 90% of Sudan’s imports and exports by sea, are continuing with their rejection of what they say is an ongoing privatisation of Port Sudan’s southern port.

In an interview with Radio Dabanga, a spokesman for the Port Workers’ Union criticised the Sudanese government for pushing ahead with what he said were plans to privatise the port.

Abdallah Musa, a spokesman for the union said that despite the…


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Luanda, Angola's capital city and main port, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Luanda, Angola’s capital city and main port

Angola will have to remain dependent on its oil for any economic growth over the foreseeable future, says the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) in its recent report on the African country.

This is on account of Angola’s weak economic diversification. The EIU forecasts the growth rate for Angola to…


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citrus fruit, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
record season for SA citrus

With a few weeks still to go South Africa’s export volumes of citrus fruit are going to be the highest ever, surpassing 2015’s 118.5 million cartons.

Justin Chadwick, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Justin Chadwick

Already the volume is closing in on 120 million 15kg cartons (1.8 million tons), says Justin Chadwick, CEO of the Citrus Growers Association (CGA).

Writing in his weekly newsletter, Chadwick says the final packed figure will not be far off the seasons opening estimate of 122.7 m cartons, although the mix favours soft citrus, lemons and Valencia at the expense of navels.

“With a bigger volume of grapefruit exported in 2017 than the previous year – all regions experienced growth in terms of total volumes. However, the volumes were spread slightly differently.”

Chadwick reported that the biggest importer was…


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Port of Dakar appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Dakar from the air

Construction of Senegal’s Port du Futur is to get underway next year in 2018.

The development of Port du Futur is to be undertaken by DP World, whose officials confirmed the start-up details last week during the visit by the DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem.

During the visit and meeting with Senegal’s President Macky Sall and…


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Tanzania metre gauge railway locomotive and train, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Tanzania metre gauge railway locomotive and train

Tanzania is preparing to launch phase two of its ambitious standard gauge railway (SGR) that will connect the port city of Dar es Salaam with Mwanza and Lake Victoria and ultimately with Rwanda and Uganda in the northwest. Tanzanian officials also talk of the line extending to the DRC border.

Phase two, a distance of 336 kilometres from Morogoro will see the wider gauge railway line reaching the capital city of Dodoma. Construction is due to commence in November 2017.

Phase one of the project was launched in April this year, extending between…


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Conference to explore maritime training for “Generation Alpha”

Professor Malek Pourzanjani, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Professor Malek Pourzanjani. Picture courtesy SAIMI

The next generation of mariners has to be as fluent in using technology as they are at reading the wind, weather and waves, says Professor Malek Pourzanjani, chief executive officer of the South African International Maritime Institute (SAIMI).

“Technology is all-pervasive, impacting on all aspects of economic and human activity. There is a need to ensure that South African and African maritime education and training meets the needs of the global maritime industry that has already embraced digitalisation.

“Training for seafarers, and other sectors of the maritime economy, must meet and go beyond current standards so that qualified South Africans can compete on the international maritime job market,” he says.

All sectors of the maritime industry are facing common challenges with training “Generation Alpha,” who will make far greater use of technology than any generation before it.

Training institutions have to offer simulator-based competency assessments, combined with “blended learning,” which is a combination of on-line and classroom courses.

Marine manufacturing companies will need to build or retrofit craft which take full advantage of digitisation, which will connect them to the Internet of Things (IoT), remote monitoring and even autonomous movement.

For this a new generation of tech-savvy seafarers, naval architects, designers, boat-builders and artisans will be needed.

Regulators are having to adapt to the changes as well, in order to make it possible for shipping lines and fishing fleets to optimise the use of digital technology.

“Then there is the pressing need for mariners to be trained for the prevention of cyber-attacks,” says Pourzanjani.

“But, perhaps the biggest challenge of all is to attract young people to the industry,” he adds.

The challenges and solutions will be discussed at the first Maritime Education & Training (MET) conference, which is being hosted by SAIMI from 14 to 17 November 2017 in Cape Town.

“The aim of the conference is to find maritime education and training solutions for South Africa that are relevant to local conditions and based on international best practice in a global industry,” he says.

For further information please contact
SAIMI: Samantha Venter: 082 4515292


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Port Louis – Indian Ocean gateway port

Ports & Ships publishes regularly updated SHIP MOVEMENT reports including ETAs for ports extending from West Africa to South Africa to East Africa and including Port Louis in Mauritius.

In the case of South Africa’s container ports of Durban, Ngqura, Ports Elizabeth and Cape Town links to container Stack Dates are also available.

You can access this information, including the list of ports covered, by going HERE remember to use your BACKSPACE to return to this page.


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QM2 in Cape Town. Picture by Ian Shiffman

We publish news about the cruise industry here in the general news section.


Naval News

Similarly you can read our regular Naval News reports and stories here in the general news section.



Saldanha Bay. Pictures: Keith Betts, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news

Saldanha Bay. Pictures: Keith Betts, appearing in Africa PORTS & SHIPS maritime news
Saldanha Bay. Pictures: Keith Betts

Logging ships are becoming quite common in Durban and probably the other South African ports as well, such is the insatiable demand for hardwood timbers. In Durban many call for bunkers, fully loaded with the timber logs obtained in various parts of Africa or South America – in this instance, the bulker SALDANHA BAY (35,947-dwt) seen here was arriving from Uruguay where she had loaded her cargo with a destination in Asia. The Panamanian flagged ship was built in 2015 and is owned and managed by Japanese interests. Her operator is Pacific Basin Shipping, one of the world’s leading owners and operators of modern Handsysize and Supramax size dry bulk carriers. The fleet numbers over 200 such ships of which Saldanha Bay is one – several others including Durban Bay and Eastern Cape carry South African names.   These pictures are by Keith Betts



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