Freight News, Logistics

Inland costs stymie Africa trade

[ December 16, 2014   //   ]

Shipping a 40’ container from Shanghai to Mombasa costs less than US $1,000, but moving the same container 1,240 miles from Mombasa to Bujumbura, in Burundi, costs $7,000. And while the sea voyage from China to Kenya takes 28 days, the road journey from Kenya’s primary port into land-locked Burundi requires 40 days.

These were the African Development Bank figures APM Terminals’ commercial director for inland services West Africa, Moussa Diop, in describing the opportunities represented by a rapidly expanding and urbanizing sub-Saharan population to the at the TOC West Africa Market Briefing conference, on 10 December.

Dip said: “The key to success in Africa is integrating port capacity with inland access. It is critical  to establish inland capabilities and operations that serve adjacent and hinterland markets, including dry ports and cargo depots.” The expertise of companies like APM could solve supply chain bottlenecks and boost trade he added.

The APM Terminals Global Terminal Network is the largest port and terminal operator in Africa, and currently has interests in 10 operating port facilities in eight West African countries, with two more in development, as well as interests in both Morocco’s Tanger-Med port, and Egypt’s Suez Canal Container terminal, and 35 Inland Services facilities.