TPA nears target as number of ships increase

21Jan 2022
Carlos Banda
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
TPA nears target as number of ships increase

The Deputy Minister for Works and Transport, Atupele Mwakibete has lauded the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) for reaching 50 per cent of its set target as the government works to boost its shipment handling capacity.

Deputy Minister of Works and Transport, Atupele Mwakibete (second from right) listens to Tanzania Port ls Authority Director General, Eric Hamissi (standing second from left) during the minister's official tour at the Dar es Salaam port.

Minister Mwakibete gave the compliments yesterday in Dar es Salaam during his official visit to the port as part of his continued tour to public institutions that are directly linked to his ministry.

“This is the second day of my official visits in Dar es Salaam and I am now here at the Port authority and I have witnessed how they operate. I would like to specially congratulate the port’s Managing Director and the Director General for their speedy initiatives. I also had the privilege to meet with the whole management and instruct them the direction to go with full knowledge that the Director General has had only 9 months since his appointment,” said he said.

“I thank the president for appointing him to the position because we have witnessed how our ports authority’s operations have changed and as I am speaking, they have managed to attain half of their set objective. If they continue performing better, they will contribute half of the money in the government’s budget,” added the Deputy Minister.

On his part, TPA Director General, Eric B Hamissi, stated that the port authority intends to achieve its set goal this year after attaining half of the objective last year while highlighting the increase in number of ships from an average of 50 ships per month to 70 ships from November.

“We had an average of 50 ships per month. But the average of ships coming into the country has where as November alone we handled 70 ships and 67 ships in the month of December. So, you can see there is an increase in the number of ships docking at the port compared to the number we had previously,” he said.

“Our key objective this year is to reach 18 million tons of shipment. Until December 31, 2021, we already reached 9.1 million tons. Therefore, you can see that we are already passed 50 per cent of the objective. We are positive that we will able surpass the objective of handling in the 2021/2022 financial year,” said the TPA Director General.

Speaking on the challenges impeding TPA, the Deputy Minister highlighted that the president has already authorized the disbursement of funds that will assist the authority to purchase the necessary machinery needed for the port’s operations.

“The port has several challenges but I would like to thank the president for starting to address the challenges. The president has authorized the disbursement of Sh 210 billion for the machinery purchase. Our port is in a very strategic location, and if you look at on the map geographically, to us its potential,” he said.

“Therefore, Sh 210 billion was disbursed. Some of the machinery has been bought and a total of Sh 290 billion was in December summing a total of 500 billion. This is all for boosting out port so that it continues being the hub for central Africa and other countries that we serve,” stated the Minister.

The Minister also emphasized and called on TPA to invest more in technology as the it is something that is unavoidable highlighting that investment in information technology is the sole reason behind China, Singapore, and Shanghai’s performances in maritime trading.