Hapag-Lloyd's EUROPA at Maputo
Cruise ship Europa berthing


Port Maputo
P O Box 2841

Telephone: +258 21 34 0500

Fax: +258 21 31 3921

MPDC Office: Tel +258 21 34 0500; Fax: +258 21 31 3921

email:  info@portmaputo.com

Cargo Operations: Tel: +258 21 34 0500; Fax: +258 21 30 7648

Marine Operations: Tel: +258 21 34 0500; Fax: +258 21 30 76 48

Port Maputo Website: www.portmaputo.com

Video: [5:12] Port Maputo (pre 2012 and before acquisition of new tugs)


Maputo port from the waterside

The great natural harbour of Maputo (Delagoa Bay) was discovered by Vasco da Gama in 1498 and lies on the sheltered estuary of Rio Espirito Santo in southern Moçambique at Longitude 32° 34′ E and Latitude 25° 58′ S.

The port has significant regional potential as an important gateway to South Africa and other regional countries including Botswana, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.

It is southern Africa’s nearest port to the rapidly developing mega-markets of Asia and is the closest deep water port to Johannesburg, Mpumalanga and Limpopo.

aerial view of Mozambique's biggest port
aerial view of Port Maputo

As part of Moçambique’s highly successful programme of economic recovery, a 25-year concession to manage and develop the port was awarded to a European port management consortium in September 2000, which subsequently formed a Moçambican joint venture, the Maputo Port Development Company (MPDC) to take over the port in April 2003.

Later that year, MPDC launched its development plan by implementing a US$70 million (approximately R455 million) priority works programme designed to quickly restore the basic essentials of an international trading port.

Amongst many other key improvements, the approach channels were restored to design depth (-11m), continuous 24/7 port operations have been established, security has been rigorously tightened, internal roads and railways have been rebuilt and new handling equipment and training schemes introduced.

Additional dredging contracts were later awarded and in late 2016 work on dredging the 76km approach channel to allow for vessels with drafts of up to 14.2 metres commenced. Having been completed early in 2017, the port now provides access through the channel for bigger ships of up to 120,000 dead weight tons, making the Port of Maputo more competitive in regional and international markets.

Matold coal rail terminal
Rail terminal at Matola

Port Maputo has excellent direct road and rail connections with Johannesburg (550km), Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.

The work of upgrading the main railway line to South Africa, creating capacity for 13 million tonne per annum by 2010 was completed.

In addition, the main line to central Zimbabwe has been rebuilt with generous American assistance and now offers 5 day transit times between Bulawayo and Maputo.

A new port access road carries heavy road traffic clear of downtown Maputo and connects the harbour direct with the M4 Highway running 600km westwards through the industrial and mining heartlands of South Africa.

Port Limitations

The Port of Maputo contains two main port areas.

There is one access channel from the open sea leading into Maputo Bay, the North Channel with a limiting depth of 14.2m (Canal do Norte). The channel passes to the North of Portuguese Island (Ilha dos Portugueses) and is well marked by light buoys.

Maputo and Matola layout
Layout of Maputo and Matola

The distance from the North Channel entrance at Buoy 1N to the Pilot Station at Buoy 6 is 25 miles. From the Pilot Station at Buoy 6 the Xefina, Polana and Matola Channels lead into the wharves and terminals. Pilotage into the berths is compulsory from Buoy 6.

The port works 24/7/365.

Full details are available at www.portmaputo.com/maputo-port-layout-data/

Marine Craft

one of two 60t bollard pull tugs
60-ton bollard pull tug named Bulani

The port has one 40 ton and two 60 ton bollard pull tugs available. These are compulsory for all vessels except Coasters and Fishing Boats.





Port Volumes

In January 2002, South Africa’s Business Day reported that throughput at the port of Maputo had dropped to 1.2 million tonnes. Since then and as a result of new investment and the re-awakening of interest in Port Maputo, 6.2m tonne had been achieved in 2005, a rate of growth that underlined ongoing market confidence in the port’s future. Port volumes for 2012 were estimated at 14 million tonnes, well indicating the growth of Maputo as a port.

Port Facilities

Maputo Container Terminal
Container Terminal at Maputo

New investment quickly re-established Port Maputo to handle a full range of regional trade through modern, secure and privately owned terminals.

There are two main components to the port, the Maputo Cargo Terminals, which include the Citrus, Sugar, Container, Ferro and Scrap terminals and, 6 km further upriver, the Matola Bulk Terminals with four deepwater berths for handling bulk Minerals, Petroleum, Aluminium and Grain.

In total, the port has 16 linear berths totalling approximately 4,000m. All are served by road and most by rail.

Fresh Water is available at most wharves and terminals.


The Port of Maputo now provides bunkering services, by way of a joint venture between the Maputo Port Development Company (MPDC) and Petromoc Bunkering (Petromoc Bunkering Limitada). The port provides Heavy Fuel Oil, Marine Diesel Oil, Gas Oil and Lub Oils, available not only to ships calling at the port, but also at the outer anchorage.

Dry Dock and Repairs

Port Maputo has a small drydock with maximum dimensions of 80m X 12m. The dock entrance sill is 3.6m below chart zero.

Mobile welding and repair services are available at all wharves.

Diver services are also available.

Ship Chandlers

Ship chandling services are available but should be arranged via Ships Agents.


Two attractive privately managed marinas provide excellent secure facilities for cruising yachts.

Full details can be found at MPDC’s website www.portmaputo.com

Maputo port approaches
port approaches