Investment in port vessels in two African nations demonstrates the potential for shipyards and designers in the region
Ports authorities in South Africa and Tanzania are gearing up for increasing trade, particularly container ship dockings, by ordering new tugs and pilot boats from the region’s busy shipyards.
Transnet National Ports Authority is near the end of a US$95M investment campaign to service ships entering South African ports. It had nine tugs on order from Durban-based ship builder Southern African Shipyards of which at least seven are in service.
This is part of an accelerated capital investment towards the Transnet 4.0 strategy, modernising and expanding the port, rail and pipeline network to ensure the group manages a globally competitive freight system.
Transneft manages eight commercial seaports along South Africa’s 2,954-km coastline. These ports are:
Transneft’s latest tug newbuildings have Voith Schneider Propellers and bollard pull of 70 tonnes.
In addition, Transneft and Southern African Shipyards are upgrading the drydock facilities in East London to stimulate ship repair and vessel construction in South Africa. Upgrades to the Princess Elizabeth drydock include a US$3.1M repair to the caisson and US$710,331 refurbishment of the dock’s main shut-off valves. The port authority expects the drydock to be back in commission in December this year.
In Tanzania, the port authority is investing in pilot boats for its harbour and marine services in the anticipation of increasing maritime trade.
Tanzania Ports Authority ordered three pilot boats from Southern Engineering Co in Kenya. These Bureau Veritas-classed, 20-m vessels were designed by Southerly Designs of Western Australia with accommodation for 15 people, including three crew.
They will have top speeds of 20 knots. This propulsion comes from two MAN main engines with combined power of 1,764 kW driving Nakashima five-blade propellers.
Tanzania Ports Authority regulates and licenses port and marine services and facilities. It also manages vessel traffic in the port of Dar es Salaam and operates a system of ports serving the Tanzania hinterland and the landlocked countries of Malawi, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda.