Zambia Destined 38,500 Tones of Sulphur in Record Clearance Time at Dar Port

Serene Theodore

By TZ Business News Staff.

Some 38,500 tones of Sulphur destined for Zambia, the largest single consignment of imported transit cargo in the history of Dar es Salaam port in Tanzania, is set to be offloaded and cleared within 10 days this September of 2021—a record clearing speed as Dar hightens competition with Kenya and South African ports for efficiency.

Serene Theodore, a 190 meters long and 32.26 meters  wide ship from Ras Laffan, Qatar berthed at the Dar es Salaam port on September 08, 2021 at 08.15pm carrying the 38,500 tons of Sulphur. The giant ship berthed at Dar port after traveling for 12 days and 20 hours according to reports.

Tanzania Shipping Agencies Corporation (TASAC) Director General Kaimu Abdi Mkeyenge told TZ Business News the speedy offloading and clearance of this consignment is intended to safeguard international standards on handling imports and export at the Dar es Salaam port.

But the speed is also calculated to impress neighboring countries. The Dar es Salaam port is trade gateway for the land locked countries of Zambia , Rwanda, Malawi, Burundi, Uganda and eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

“Tell our Zambian friends they are not a land-locked country. They are a land-linked country to Tanzania,”  Mkeyenge told TZ Business News. “Tell them to bring their goods to Dar for export.”

Tanzania Shipping Agencies Corporation (TASAC) Director General Kaimu Abdi Mkeyenge

Speedy offloading and clearance of imports builds trust among shippers on the Dar es Salaam port–which in turn gives them reason to return to the port in future, the TASAC Director General said.  Delays increase the cost of shipping and can force shippers to use other ports in anger because most ships are rented from ship owners who slap extra rental charges for delays at one port.

Ship owners will slap a ‘demurrage charge’ to a ship renter for delays, Mkeyenge explained.  The demurrage charge is then ‘cost-pushed’ to shipping agencies like TASAC. To avoid these demurrage charges offloading and clearing of imports must be speeded, he said.

Serene Theodore docked at the port on Wednesday night, September 8,2021.  Offloading and clearing started the following day. On Friday, September 10, 2021,  5000 tones of sulphur had already been offloaded from the ship and transported to the Malawi transit cargo yard in Dar es Salaam ready for transportation to Zambia.

The 10 days of emptying sulphur from the giant ship compare to nightmare experiences in the past when ships carrying imports for Tanzania and its neighbors would wait for 20 days or more before cargo would be offloaded at the Dar es Salaam port.

The announced volume of cargo on Serene Theodore and its offloading and clearance record speed in fact constitute a double-record milestone at the  port.

A Government statement distributed on social media on Thursday, September 9, 2021 said this volume of cargo was the biggest volume to arrive on a single ship at the Dar port ever.  The shipment has broken a record set  ten years ago when a single ship brought 30,000 tons of cargo.

The records are being set against a backdrop of massive improvements at the port reported by this website  and other media outlets earlier.

Read also the following related stories: Dar Witnesses Dramatic Increase of Ship Arrivals, and  Dar Port Expansion Tanzania’s Feat to Improve Great Lakes Gateway to the World