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Kenya Ports Authority boss sees increased port cargo traffic

Managing Director Catherine Mturi-Wairi

The Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) says it is modernising Kenyan seaports to grow cargo volumes as the economy expands.

New Managing Director Catherine Mturi-Wairi said KPA is seeking to equip the Port of Mombasa with modern equipment, build more infrastructure, train staff, improve security systems and automate port services to achieve higher port standards.

“Our vision is “World class seaports of choice” and this requires that we improve our services to international standards that are embraced by top performing ports in the world like Shanghai, Port Klang, Singapore, Antwerp, Durban, Rotterdam, Miami,” Mrs Wairi, the first female MD in the history of KPA, said.

Cargo through Mombasa port is expected to rise from 26.7 million tonnes in 2015 to 28.5 million tonnes next year and 54 million tonnes by the year 2030, she said.

OIL AND GAS

Wairi said container traffic is projected to move from one million twenty foot equivalent units (teus) in 2015 to 1.6 million teus in 2018 and 3.4 million teus by 2030. “In the next 16 years, we see KPA running more than one commercial port that will include the Lamu Mega Port and other smaller but highly developed ports along the coastline,” she said.

Mrs Wairi said ports under KPA shall be hubs handling high volumes of transhipment and transit cargoes. The MD noted that the port’s total container terminal capacity now standing at 1.65 million teus will be expanded to 2.5 million teus when the second phase of container terminal two is completed.

Phase one of the project with capacity of 450,000 teus has been completed. “The Port of Mombasa is a lifeline to the regional economies, with a significant percentage of their respective imports and exports passing through the port. And with the discovery of oil and gas in the region, the port is poised to play an even more crucial role in trade facilitation,” Wairi explained.

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