Karachi's New Port Terminal Wins "Container Terminal of the Year" Award

Karachi's SAPT (South Asia Port Terminal) Automatic Container Yard and Housing Project is one of 18 winners of "Year in Infrastructure 2019" awards announced by Bentley Systems.

South Asia Port Terminal, Karachi, Pakistan

The annual awards highlight the work of Bentley software users advancing infrastructure design, construction, and operations throughout the world. 12 independent jury panels of distinguished industry experts selected  the 54 finalists from 571 nominations submitted by more than 440 organizations in more than 60 countries.

Hutchison Ports Pakistan is the country’s first deep-water container terminal, designed to accommodate super post Panamax ships, the largest container ships operating today. It is situated at the Keamari Groyne basin and provides the most convenient access to large vessels entering Karachi.

The new container port recently notched up a new productivity high — claimed to be the best-ever at a Pakistani port — when it handled the 8,562-TEU Hyundai Courage. The terminal handled 2,683 moves in about 13 hours, with berth productivity reaching 203.4 moves per hour and gross crane rates averaging 32.3 moves per hour. While in berth, the vessel loaded and discharged 3,501 TEU. That productivity beats the previous high of 1,953 moves in 11 hours, which the terminal achieved on the Hyundai Global, the company told JOC.com.

The US$1.4 billion container terminal operates as a partnership between Hutchison Ports Pakistan, a member of the Hutchison Ports network, and Karachi Port Trust. Hutchison Ports has invested US$600 million to develop the terminal and install the latest technology, whereas Karachi Port Trust has invested over US$350 million on reclamation work and dredging.

Hutchison Ports Pakistan also works with Pakistan Customs to improve clearance systems and procedures and enable easier and faster cargo clearance for end users. With this high-tech, deep-water facility at Karachi Port, Pakistan has the basis to compete with global peers as a modern trading economy.

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Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan #cement sales go up by 2.56pc in first quarter of FY 2019-20. In September, total dispatches increased by 11.51 percent to 4.270 million tons. Domestic sales increased to 9.116m tons from 9.063m tons while #exports grew by 12.54pc to 2.017m tons https://nation.com.pk/20-Oct-2019/cement-dispatches-go-up-by-2-56pc-in-first-quarter

Pakistan’s total cement dispatches during first quarter of the fiscal year went up by 2.56 percent to 11.133 million tons. Out of total sales, local dispatches increased to 9.116m tons from 9.063m tons while exports grew by 12.54pc to 2.017m tons from 1.792m in the last fiscal year. In September, total dispatches increased by 11.51 percent to 4.270 million tons compared to the corresponding period last year. During the month, domestic consumption reached 3.472m tons from 3.114 million tons during the same month last year. Exports rose to 0.798 million tons last month as compared to 0.715 million tons in September 2018. Local consumption in the northern region during the month under review swelled by 22.4pc to 3.027m tons from 2.47 million tons in September 2018. The southern region witnessed 30.48pc drop in dispatches to 0.446m tons from 0.64 million tons in September 2018. Industry experts said the lopsided consumption pattern has benefited plants located in the northern region while those operating in the south have entered the red zone in view of over 32 percent drop in uptake during the first quarter of this fiscal year. They said the country has the potential to produce about 60 million tons of cement per year. Recently, a cement company has closed its old plant, which had production capacity of 3,150 tons per day. The government has given tax benefits on the introduction of new technology in cement plants. At present, the interest rate in Pakistan is so high that no one is considering starting a new business.
Riaz Haq said…
Hutchison Ports to invest additional #240 million despite #Pakistan’s slowing #economy. The company has made no change in its #investment plan for expansion of container #terminal at #Karachi port to increase its capacity up to 3.2 million TEUs by 2022. https://tribune.com.pk/story/2105387/2-hutchison-ports-invests-despite-pakistans-slowing-economy/


Talking about the progress on phase-II of the Hutchison Ports’ terminal with an additional investment of $240 million, he said it would help expand the installed capacity for handling containerised cargo at the terminal located at the Karachi Port. “With this, the total investment in the terminal by Hutchison Ports Pakistan will increase to over $600 million,” he said.

In a bid to improve the deteriorating macroeconomic indicators, the federal government took measures to narrow the twin deficits in first quarter of the current fiscal year 2019-20.

“Declining imports are favourable for the economy, but ports and terminal operators are losing revenue and import cargoes are going down,” said Rashid. “This is even more challenging for us as we have no sovereign guarantee for payments.”

However, he said despite the tough times, Karachi Port had the potential of becoming the transit and transhipment hub in the near future.

“We are very optimistic about the economy of Pakistan and despite the hard times due to decreasing imports, our investment plan in phase-II is very much on track.

“Our total investment in Pakistan will touch $1 billion by the end of this investment cycle,” he added.

He pointed out that civil work in the second phase was ahead of schedule and would be completed in 2021, while additional equipment would be installed by 2022.

“It will be a state-of-the-art terminal, which will use remote-controlled ship-to-shore cranes and semi-automated yard cranes, which were first introduced in the country by Hutchison Ports Pakistan.”

Hutchison Ports is also planning to invest in logistics services both upstream and downstream and for this it is in talks with Pakistan Railways.

The development of phase-II includes three internal railway tracks, which will connect the terminal to the main lines. Movement of cargo through rail will be a public-private partnership with Pakistan Railways.

“We have chalked out our strategy in view of the economic slowdown, as at the time of the decision on raising investment in the terminal, the present situation of economic slowdown was not expected,” Jamil said.

He said cargo volumes at terminals had been constantly declining for the last two years and imports of consumer goods had gone down. Balancing, modernisation and replacement activities in the industries are also slowing down and no major plant and machinery are being imported.

“On the other hand, exports are increasing and imports of industrial raw material have also gone up. We will manage this situation by rescheduling of delay in equipment purchase as this will help us get the latest equipment and technology.”

Pakistan’s first deep-water container terminal is capable of handling the world’s largest vessels. Currently, it has the capacity of handing 1.5 million TEUs annually. The terminal was utilising 50% capacity about a few weeks ago, but currently it is operating at 64% capacity utilisation.

“The terminal was at its peak at 100% capacity utilisation in January 2019 due to a push in CPEC-related consignments.” The terminal operator is looking for a partnership with a consolidated big shipping line. It would most probably be an eastern shipping line to achieve economies of scale and utilise its enhanced capacity after the completion of phase-II.

Compared to other terminals, Hutchison Ports Pakistan is paying almost double charges to the land authority in the form of royalty, which makes it expensive for its customers.

Increasing efficiency is the only way to minimise the cost for which Hutchison Ports is investing in technologies and human resources.
Riaz Haq said…
Incomplete roads in #Pakistan's #economic hub #Karachi — the biggest city in #Pakistan and the third-largest in the world — show what happens when a megacity becomes a political orphan. Karachi ranks as having the worst public #transport system globally. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2020-11-02/pakistan-s-megacity-tries-to-modernize

Karachi was once well connected by a circular railway but corruption and mismanagement in the transportation sector brought the city to a grinding halt in the late 1990s, according to Adam Weinstein, research fellow at the Washington D.C.-based Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Many of the railway tracks have become illegal slums with people moving from smaller towns to earn more.

“Karachi has yet to find a humane way to address land encroachment that stymies development and relocate people without incurring immense political blowback,” said Weinstein.

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Muhammad Ali Jinnah Road has always had its share of traffic, but lately the main thoroughfare that connects central Karachi to its major port is in a state of near constant gridlock.

An elevated street eats up two of the road’s three lanes, but it’s empty — part of an incomplete project to create express lanes for public buses that was supposed to finish three years ago. It’s one of many towering structures scattered throughout the Pakistani city that were part of the latest plans to bring a modern transportation to Karachi, one of the world’s fastest-growing cities and the third-biggest by population.

Karachi ranks as having the worst public transport system globally, according to a 2019 study by car-parts company Mister Auto that looked at 100 major cities. It serves about 42% of Karachi’s commuters, relying on decades-old, overcrowded buses that use the roof as a second deck for passengers at times. Roads are filled with potholes, not all traffic signals are automated, and it’s common to see drivers running red lights. And yet the former capital is home to Pakistan’s main ports and the regional headquarters for companies such as Standard Chartered Plc and Unilever Plc, helping it generate half of the nation’s tax revenue.

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“Karachi, despite its importance, is a political orphan,” said Arsalan Ali Faheem, a consultant at DAI, a Bethesda, Maryland-based company that advises on development projects. “The federal government is limited in what it can do, and the city government controls less than a quarter of the city. It means that Karachi’s problems belong simultaneously to everyone and no one.”




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“If cities can provide quality infrastructure, it by default increases productivity,” Uzair Younus, a non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, said by phone. He’s the host of the “Pakistonomy” podcast and a former Karachi resident. “An administrative setup that is unable to provide decent mass transit to the largest city in the country will always be viewed with skepticism.”
Riaz Haq said…
Cargo handling operations remained active at Karachi port and Port Qasim during the outgoing week.

https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/karachi-port-handles-894017-tonnes-of-cargo/

A total volume of 894,017 tonnes was handled at the Karachi port in which the share of imports and exports were 676,689 tonnes and 217,319 tonnes respectively.

In the import category, the share of oil and liquid cargo and containerised cargo stood at 298,082 tonnes and 251,340 tonnes followed by 21,066 tonnes of bulk cargo, 36,404 tonnes of soyabean seeds, 45,444 tonnes of wheat, 23,576 tonnes of iron and steel scrap and 786 cattle.

Export cargo handling at the Karachi port stood at 146,845 tonnes of containerised cargo followed by 1,069 tonnes of bulk cargo, 21,250 tonnes of cement, 29,000 tonnes of clinkers, 17,155 tonnes of iron ore and 2,000 tonnes of oil and liquid cargo.Around 35 ships took berth and 27 ships sailed out during the last week.

At Port Qasim, a total cargo volume of 862,621 tonnes were handled comprising 632,814 tonnes of import and 229,843 tonnes of export during the last week.

Imported cargo comprised of steel coil, coal, palm oil, motor gasoline, LNG, wheat, chemical, project cargo and containerised cargo. Goods exported included cement and containerised cargo.
Riaz Haq said…
Karachi's ‘China port’ opens again to public

https://www.dawn.com/news/1648615


KARACHI: It was back in 2018 when several Karachiites first discovered this new picnic spot at the South Asia Pakistan Terminal (SAPT). But no sooner did social media along with a few newspapers publish its pictures, the hungry-for-outings public thronged the place, which was closed soon after. Well, it has been reopened recently.

This comparatively bare portion of the beach presents a clear and closer view of the breakwater, Oyster Rocks and the tall port cranes and all the cargo ships entering and leave port.

There is also a freshness about the sea breeze. A father had brought with him his two children on his bike here to enjoy the view. They were happily sipping on their box of juices while digging into a bag of potato crisps as they animatedly pointed towards the ships and the fishermen at work before them. Some children are also bathing in the sea.


“We have been coming here regardless of the barriers and closure for our catch,” says one of the several fishermen busy sorting out their catch for the day. “But it was closed for the general public as there was plenty of activity at SAPT at the time. Now the Chinese workers seem to have left and this place has been reopened again,” he added his observation.

There is all kinds of catch in the pile before them. There is very tiny fish that glitters and shines like small pieces of silver under the bright sun, there are tiny shrimp, which can be used as bait for bigger catch, too, along with different species such as squid. The fishermen are busy separating all the various species from each other and dropping them in baskets.

“Most of the catch from here is used in preparing chicken feed, also for plant fertiliser,” says another fisherman. “But we are going to take it all to the Karachi fisheries to sell.”

Yet another fisherman informed that they arrive at the place before dawn for the catch.

Dawn tried to call the Karachi Port Trust about the reopening of the China port but was informed that their offices won’t be able to respond regarding the matter or for any comments over the weekend.

Riaz Haq said…
#Freight #train service launched to link #Karachi container terminal with rest of #Pakistan. A 3.7km, high-tech train track laid at the Hutchison Ports Pakistan connecting the facility to the rest of the country. #Railway - DAWN.COM
https://www.dawn.com/news/1671360


Several terminals for freight service planned: Swati
• Says Railways will become profitable within six months

KARACHI: The huge and powerful dark green locomotive attached to a long line of big and small freight containers awaited the inauguration ceremony to be off on its way at the Hutchison Ports Pakistan, also known as the South Asia Pakistan Terminal, on Monday.

Then as soon as the ribbon was cut, it honked loudly while making the slouching guests sit up straight in their chairs as it chugged away on its new ballastless tracks. Expected to take away the traffic congestion caused by container trucks on roads and highways here, this freight train will reach its destination, Lahore, in up to four days.

The freight train service also coincides with the commissioning of a 3.7km, high-tech train track laid at the Hutchison Ports Pakistan connecting the facility to the rest of the country in a seamless manner through Pakistan Railway’s extensive network spread throughout the country.


This new track laid within the terminal comprised three rail sidings of 700 metres each alongside a crippled wagon sliding. The tracks are embedded in concrete and are ballastless, which is a better, albeit a more expensive option than the traditional sleeper/ballast design used in Pakistan. Switching between the tracks and signalling is carried out using a computer-based interlocking system, eliminating the need for manual switching. As many as three freight trains can be handled simultaneously using rubber-tyred gantry cranes with a quick turnaround. Another track can also be added.

Captain Syed Rashid Jamil, general manager and head of business unit at Hutchison Ports Pakistan, said that with the commencement of the freight train service, they were expanding their contribution towards Pakistan’s trade. “We are extending our physical gates to somewhere in Multan, Sialkot and Lahore as the containers will be discharged from the ships and put on a train that will deliver them to the customers at their factory gates,” he said.

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“Karachi needs to be an international standard business hub. Pakistan’s entire business, its industry, its trade all come from here. It only needs good governance to transform this city and this country,” he said.

The federal minister announced they needed to work at connecting Port Qasim Authority with this freight train service too. “We should also be transporting coal and oil via railway,” he said.

Sindh Governor Imran Ismail said port cities across the world were responsible for their country’s prosperity and Karachi was a port city.

Earlier, Pakistan had its flag-carrier PIA, Railways and Pakistan Steel Mills to be proud of, the governor said, “but now PIA is running losses, the Pakistan Railways is running losses and the Steel Mills happen to be a burden on the exchequer. It is so because our country fell in the wrong hands”.

“But now we have people like Railways Minister Swati and Minister for Maritime Affairs like Ali Zaidi, who are powerful pillars. They are doers. [PM] Imran Khan has chosen the best people in his cabinet. We were labelled as incompetent in our first year of governance but we kept working with the uplift of economy as our main focus despite the Covid-19 pandemic and now Imran Khan is the first prime minister in years to have completed the longest term in office,” he said.

PSO, Railways ink MoU
In a related development, Pakistan State Oil (PSO) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Pakistan Railways for the supply of POL products, transportation and other businesses.

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