PORTS, TRANSPORT AND LOGISTICS SECTOR NEWS ROUND-UP (29 JULY – 9 AUGUST 2019)

By Norma Wheeler,Andrew Pike,Trudie Nichols Thursday, August 15, 2019
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In light of the rapid pace of infrastructure and transport developments across Africa, our Ports, Transport and Logistics (PTL) Sector Group is pleased to present Bowmans’ latest PTL news round-up. Our regular round-ups bring you a selection of pan-African PTL-related stories and keep you up to date regarding developments in the space across Africa.

We draw on a network of multi-disciplinary experts across Africa in fields as diverse as project finance, construction and environmental law, to keep you in the know about developments and thought leadership in the PTL space.

As the articles to which we refer readers are, unless stated otherwise, neither written nor edited by ourselves and appear in their original form, we mention that by publishing them Bowmans does not necessarily agree with opinions expressed in those articles.

This edition includes news headlines and links to articles from a variety of sources, covering stories from Angola, Benin, Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Calls for public comment (South Africa):

  • Comments on the National Ports Amendment Regulations, 2019
    The National Ports Amendment Regulations, 2019 were published on 19 July 2019 by the Department of Transport. A copy may be found here. Comments on the draft Regulations must be submitted within 30 days of publication. With this date falling over a weekend, we’d suggest you aim to submit any comments on or before Friday 16 August 2019.
  • The National Ports Authority Tariff Application for 2020/21 - 2022/23
    The National Ports Authority has submitted its tariff application for 2020/21 - 2022/23 to the Ports Regulator of South Africa (the Regulator). A copy of the tariff application is available on the Regulator’s website here. Written comments should be submitted by 16 September 2019.

Construction of Ghanaian Port of Takoradi Multi-Purpose Terminal begins (Ghana)
Source: Africa Ports (8 August 2019)
Not long after the opening of the new Meridian-operated Container Terminal at the Port of Tema, Ghana’s second major port project, a multi-purpose terminal at Takoradi has commenced. Phase One of the US$475 million Atlantic Terminal Services project began with the ceremonial laying of the first block as a sign that the project is now underway. Read the full article here. Also reported in FTW Online here.

AfDB to help finance phase 1 of Ethiopia-Djibouti road corridor (Ethiopia and Djibouti)
Source: Africa Ports (8 August 2019)
The government of Ethiopia and the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group have signed a US$98 million grant agreement from the African Development Fund (ADF) to help finance phase one of the Ethiopia–Djibouti Road Transport Corridor Project. Read the full article here.

Kenya government backtracks on SGR directive (Kenya)

Source: Africa Ports (8 August 2019)
The Kenya government has hurriedly backtracked on a directive issued that cargo bound for Nairobi from the port at Mombasa must be sent by standard gauge railway (SGR). Read the full article here.

Tullow Oil moves in on the Comoros Islands (Comoros)

Source: Africa Ports (7 August 2019)
UK-based Tullow Oil which announced last November that it had agreed a deal with Discover Exploration Ltd’s affiliate, Discover Exploration Comoros, to acquire a 35 per cent working interest in the Comoros Island’s Blocks 35, 36 and 37, has now completed its entry and that a 3D seismic contract award had been approved by Tullow’s JV partners and the Comoros government. Read the full article here.

AfDB makes AU grant of US$4.8 million for AfCFTA (African Union)

Source: Africa Ports (7 August 2019)
The African Development Bank Group on Monday signed a US$4.8 million institutional support grant to the African Union (AU) for implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The grant, approved by the Group’s Board of Directors on 1 April 2019, forms part of a series of interventions by the Bank in its lead role to accelerate implementation of the Free Trade Agreement, seen as a major force for integrating the 55-nation continent and transforming its economy. Read the full article here. Also reported in FTW Online here.

Walvis Bay new container terminal opens (Namibia)
Source: Africa Ports (6 August 2019)
The Port of Walvis Bay’s new container terminal in Namibia was officially opened on Friday, 2 August, with the country’s President Hage Geingob marking the opening by referring to the new facility as a milestone and another indication that Namibia continues to make great strides towards achieving its developmental objectives as outlined in its national development plans. Read the full article here.

Trade partnerships must be aligned to the AfCFTA: Patel (South Africa)
Source: Africa Ports (6 August 2019)
Trade partnerships should be aligned to the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel said yesterday (Monday). “This is the first AGOA Forum since the launch of the operational phase of the ACFTA, the potential economic game changer for our continent and the realisation of the decades old dream of the African economic unity. Read the full article here.

Deal signed for new Tanzanian bridge (Tanzania)
Source: FTW Online (6 August 2019)
Tanzania has signed a deal with two Chinese groups -- China Civil Engineering Construction and China Railway 15th Bureau -- for the construction of a 3.2km bridge over parts of Lake Victoria. Read the full article here.

€305m Gabon project gets backing (Gabon)

Source: Port Strategy (5 August 2019)
Financing has been secured for a €305m infrastructure upgrade by Gabon Special Economic Zone Ports (GSEZ Ports) at Owendo Port in Gabon. Read the full article here.

Djibouti Government continues to challenge international law, says DP World (Djibouti)
Source: Africa Ports (5 August 2019)
A decision that was due to be taken last week by the government of Djibouti to apply to the country’s high court to rule all previous international adjudications null and void is a complete disregard for and contravention of the global legal system and existing contracts, says Dubai-based port and terminal operator, DP World. Read the full article here.

Ghana to build new Western region naval & military base at Edzinlibo (Ghana)
Source: Africa Ports (5 August 2019)
The Ghanaian government has signed a contract worth US$200 million for the construction of a Forward Operating Base (FOB) at Edzinlibo in the Western Region for the protection of the country’s oil and gas infrastructure. Read the full article here.

Construction of Anadarko processing LNG units in Rovuma Basin to begin (Mozambique)

Source: Africa Ports (2 August 2019)
Matters are quickly coming to a head with the extraction and production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in northern Mozambique, after years of preparation and exploration. On Monday 5 August construction of Anadarko Petroleum’s onshore processing units for the LNG being extracted in the Rovuma basin is due to commence. Read the full article here. Also reported in FTW Online here.

Angola takes back state control of Luanda and Lobito port terminals (Angola)
Source: Africa Ports (2 August 2019)
According to a report in the Angolan media, the state has assumed control of the multi-purpose terminals at the ports of Luanda and Lobito that were previously under the management of Soportos – Transporte and Descarga, SA. Read the full article here.

Fitch Solutions thinks gas pipeline between Mozambique & South Africa unlikely (Mozambique and South Africa)
Source: Africa Ports (1 August 2019)
According to consultancy Fitch Solutions the construction of a gas pipeline between northern Mozambique and South Africa is increasingly unlikely because neither market generates sufficient demand to justify the investment. Read the full article here.

Kenya SGR sets new six-month container handling record (Kenya)
Source: Africa Ports (1 August 2019)
Kenya’s Mombasa to Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) has established a new half-year record for containers handled between January and June. For the first six months of 2019 the SGR handled 197,000 twenty-foot equivalent (TEUs) containers compared with 77,020 TEU for the same period of 2018, an impressive 155 per cent increase half-year on half-year. Read the full article here.

EAC countries stake a claim as AfCFTA benchmark countries (Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania)
Source: FTW Online (1 August 2019)
The East African Community’s (EAC) ability to progressively tick all the necessary boxes of effective border control and customs procedures, especially given the tentative roll-out of African Free Trade Continental Area’s (AfCTFA) testing phase, was put on display during a recent event in Zanzibar. Read the full article here.

Total SA signs agreement to build FLNG for use off Benin (Benin)
Source: Africa Ports (31 July 2019)
French oil major Total SA has entered into an agreement with the Republic of Benin and the Société Béninoise d’Energie Electrique (SBEE) for the development of a Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) terminal to be positioned off Benin. Read the full article here.

East Africans forced to fall back on old metre gauge railways (Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania)
Source: Africa Ports (31 July 2019)
Although construction of the standard gauge railway (SGR) is continuing in Tanzania, that country too is turning back to the revamping of its old colonial-era metre gauge railway network built over a hundred years ago. Read the full article here.

Equipment on its way to reopen Kenya's Kisumu port on Lake Victoria (Kenya)
Source: Africa Ports (29 July 2019)
Following promises that Kenya’s port at Kisumu on Lake Victoria would be returned to service after having stood largely idle for several years, the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) has begun transporting vital equipment to the port. The equipment includes 15-tonne mobile cranes, forklift trucks and tractor-trailers that will enable efficient cargo handling. Read the full article here.

Two new mobile cranes for West Africa Container Terminal, Onne (Nigeria)
Source: Africa Ports (29 July 2019)
The West Africa Container Terminal at the Nigerian port of Onne has been strengthened with the acquisition of two new mobile cranes at a cost of US$10 million (N3.6 billion). Their purchase comes following an increase in vessel traffic at WACT and other Nigerian eastern ports following the diverting of ships and their cargoes because of the traffic gridlock affecting the Lagos ports. Read the full article here.

Truckers call for quicker turnaround at Chirundu border (Zambia and Zimbabwe)
Source: FTW Online (29 July 2019)
Truck drivers have called on the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) to extend operating hours at Chirundu’s one-stop border post where clearance of goods is now taking up to six days. Read the full article here.