Tanga — THE Tanga Port has recorded a noteworthy surge in vessels calling at the port by 14 per cent in the last five years.
Report released here by the Tanga Port Manager, Mr Masoud Mrisha, say that the number of passengers the port serves has also greatly increased.
The report shows that the number of passengers that the port serves has significantly risen by 25 per cent, including passengers who embark and disembark at the port.
According to the report, both coastal and deep-sea vessel calls have increased yearly, with the number of vessels increasing from 139 in the year 2017/18 to 198 in the year 2020/21.
Based on the report, the port handled 501,902 GRT for vessels in 2017/18 and will handle 918,981 Gross Register Tonnage (GRT) in 2022/23.
“This indicates that not only has the quantity of vessel calls received at the Tanga Port increased, but the port now receives big vessels,” he said.
The report reveals a remarkable increase in the passenger traffic at the port, as the number of passengers has doubled from 45,820 during 2017/18 to an astonishing 95,973 in 2020/21.
The port provides passenger services to complement the variety of traditional and modern vessels offered at the port, including cruise ships and dhows that travel to Unguja and Pemba in Zanzibar.
Tanga Port has a long history as an East African port that specialises in handling agricultural cargo. Sisal, timber, coffee, black tea, sunflower products, macadamia, and, most recently, copper are major commodities.
“The port is now recording growth in handling imports of raw materials, including pet-coke, clinker, water pipes, trucks, ammonium nitrate, machinery, and machinery parts. This is due to the national revitalisation of the industrial sector,” the report highlights.
With the port’s expansion and improvement, the port manager thought it has the potential to perform better right now.
Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zambia, Malawi and Kenya are the seven market countries that could potentially be served by the port, according to Mr Mrisha, who pointed out that it is the only port in Africa with such a capability.
He added that because of its proximity to the Northern Tourism Circuit, which includes Saadani National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti and Kilimanjaro National Park, the port has the potential to grow cruise tourism calls.