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i-maritime News Letter

Visakhapatnam port handles 59 million tonnes of cargo - 2013-04-01

The Visakhapatnam port handled 59.134 million tonnes of cargo during 2012-13, occupying the third position in the country among major ports, with Kandla and JNPT being in the first and second slots, according to sources. The port handled 67 million tonnes during the previous financial year and due to a variety of reasons it could not reach the target of 68 million tonnes set by the Union Ministry of Shipping this year. The fall in iron-ore cargo, the diversion of transhipment cargo to Paradip port and the ongoing mechanisation works on many berths are said to be some of the reasons for the shortfall and sources say that on the whole the port's performance is quite creditable, though it has slipped to the third position.

The port could not handle cargo at the general cargo berth due to mechanisation project in the outer harbour and the cargo had to be handled in smaller vessels in the inner harbour, making a substantial dent in the cargo-handling. Like many other ports, it also suffered a loss of 2-3 million tonnes of iron ore cargo and one million tonnes of pellets. It was quite a blow to a port mainly dependent on bulk cargo. The Paradip port, with its single buoy mooring, grabbed a substantial chunk of transhipment cargo and 3 million tonnes of cargo or so was lost. There was also loss of fertilisers to the extent of a million tonnes or so. "With the completion of the general cargo berth mechanisation project, the port will be in a better position next year to compete with other ports. Several other projects are in various stages of execution with private participation and the port's capacity and efficiency will increase in the years to come," said the sources, admitting that 2012-13 was not a very encouraging year.

Source : Hindu Business Line