Ports & Ships Maritime News

May 3, 2006
Author: P&S

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TODAY’S BULLETIN OF MARITIME NEWS

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  • Namibia’s northern railway steams ahead


  • Cote d’Ivoire: First convoy could mark reopening of north-south trade route


  • Kenya says yes to submarine cable


  • Congo: Reconstruction of Brazzaville-Kinkala road begins


  • Tanzania prepares to concession Dar es salaam multi purpose terminal





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    Namibia’s northern railway steams ahead

    Namibia’s northern railway has reached the town of Ondangwa and the first phase is expected to be completed well ahead of its scheduled September completion date, reports The Namibian newspaper.

    The publication quoted Namibia’s Minister of Works, Transport and Communication, Joel Kaapanda, as telling parliament last week that the main aim of the railway is to accelerate economic co-operation and integration as well as to promote socio-economic development, to reduce poverty and the create employment opportunities along the country’s transport corridors.

    So far 246 km of new railway has been completed, bringing Namibia’s rail network to a total of 2,628 km. The minister said the second phase, from Ondangwa to Oshikango would commence later this year.

    Kaapanda said it was his hope that bulk cargo would in future be hauled largely by train to avoid damaging the country’s road infrastructure.

    "Rail transport will equally complement road transport, thus reducing the damaging impact of heavy vehicles on the road infrastructure," he said.

    He reported that Namibia’s second rail project, which involves the rehabilitation of 139 km of railway on the Aus – Luderitz line was making good progress and was expected to facilitate the haulage of zinc and copper from the Skorpion and Rosh Pinah mines to the port of Luderitz.

    He said that much of Namibia’s rail network was in need of rehabilitation if it was to take on the role of carrying bulk cargo.

    - source The Namibian (www.namibian.com.na)


    COTE D IVOIRE: First convoy could mark reopening of north-south trade route

    Abidjan, 2 May 2006 (IRIN) - The arrival of a convoy of 29 trucks in Cote d’Ivoire’s port city of Abidjan from northern landlocked neighbour Burkina Faso may lead to a resumption of transit trade between the two countries after a nearly four-year war-imposed blockage, an official said on Tuesday.

    The cotton convoy passed through the rebel-controlled north of Cote d’Ivoire as well as a UN and French monitored buffer zone before reaching the port in the southern government-controlled half of the West African country.

    According to Ivorian officials from the Ministry of Transport the convoy was a trial run for the resumption of overland shipments to Abidjan from Burkina Faso.

    Due to security concerns, the Burkinabe transporters “waited a long time but this year they finally said: let’s give it a try,” Adama Coulibaly, who heads a special ministerial task force to improve overland trade, told IRIN.

    “Their first impressions were positive,” said Coulibaly. “We really hope that they decide to ship the rest of their 50,000 tonnes of cotton to Abidjan. Then the other goods will come automatically.”

    Until the outbreak of war in September 2002, Abidjan port was the main transit point for imports and exports throughout francophone West Africa.

    The rebellion that left the country split in two has had a devastating impact on landlocked nations like Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, leaving their economies cut off from the cheapest route to the international market.

    Though a 7,000-strong UN force and 4,000 French troops maintain a cease-fire, traders have shied away from using the old route as rebels and government security forces that man hundreds of checkpoints along the road are notorious for extortion and racketeering.

    And in the government-run south, Burkinabe truck drivers are especially targeted for cash because they are considered to be sympathetic to the rebel New Forces movement.

    But at a fixed price of 100,000 CFA per truck - around USD 200 - the transporters were guaranteed a safe passage, ministry official Coulibaly said. “The security forces have reassured us that they will facilitate the arrival of the convoys in the Ivorian ports,” he said.

    (This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations)

    - source IRINnews.org


    Kenya says yes to submarine cable

    Kenya Broadcasting Corporation reported earlier today that Kenya would fast-track its own parallel communication project with a fibre optic cable linking the East African coast with the rest of the world.

    This follows delays in the implementation of the East Africa Submarine Cable project, which involves connecting the East African coast with the rest of the world through South Africa. This has been delayed by squabbles over management and payment issues which has led to fears that the project would remain stillborn.

    According to Kenya’s Information and Communications Permanent Secretary, Dr Bitange Ndemo, Kenya will finance its own project and intends looking at a possible link through Djibouti in the Red Sea.

    The Kenyan project could be completed by the middle of next year, compared with a 2008 target date for the original project through South Africa.

    - source Kenya Broadcasting Corporation


    CONGO: Reconstruction of Brazzaville-Kinkala road begins

    Brazzaville, 1 May 2006 (IRIN) - Work has begun on the resurfacing of the 62-km stretch of road that links Brazzaville, capital of the Republic of Congo, to Kinkala, the main town the country's war-torn Pool region in the south of the country.

    The European Union (EU) has loaned Congo 31 billion francs CFA (about USD 62 million) for the two-year project to be undertaken by the French firm Dragages and the public works companies DTP-Earthwork and Socofran.

    "When completed, this project must open access to the Pool so that its residents can access basic social services," Domenica Pavard, the head of the EU delegation to the country, said.

    She added that the project should help reduce poverty by revamping the local economy, especially agriculture. The area was a major agricultural producer before the civil wars that raged from 1998 to 2002. The road fell into a state of disrepair due to neglect during the wars.

    The prefect of Pool, the region’s most senior administrator, Jean Michel Sangha, said the rebuilding of the road, which began on Saturday, would help consolidate the prevailing peace in Pool and create jobs.

    The EU paid for the construction of the road, initially built in 1968, which is a segment of National Highway 1 that connects Brazzaville to Pointe-Noire, the country's second largest city on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. In 2000, the EU authorised money for the reconstruction but withdrew its funding because of the activity of armed bands in the Pool. However, it resumed its aid after the government and the rebel Conseil national de résistance - which directed the armed bands known as the Ninjas - signed a peace deal with the government.

    The reopening of the road should make it easier for humanitarian organisations, such as Medecins Sans Frontieres and the International Committee of the Red Cross, to return to the Pool. They left due to insecurity.

    The government is due to undertake a USD 17-million World Bank-financed effort to disarm, demobilise and reintegrate into society some 30,000 ex-fighters of the civil war.

    (This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations)

    - source IRINnews.org


    Tanzania prepares to concession Dar es Salaam’s multi purpose terminal

    Tanzania is preparing to concession the Dar es Salaam multi purpose terminal, according to reports within the port city.

    The concessioning has become necessary as a result of the Tanzania Ports Authority having taken on the role of landlord authority, which precludes it from terminal operation.

    The seven berth general cargo terminal handles breakbulk and bulk cargo and has a paved cargo working area and a number of sheds, a grain silo and associated workshops.

    The adjacent Dar es Salaam container terminal was concessioned in 2000 for a ten year period to the Tanzania International Container Terminal (TICT).


    Did you know that Ports & Ships lists ship movements for all ports between Walvis Bay on the West Coast and Beira on the East Coast?



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