CONSTRUCTION of Bagamoyo Port is set to commence in the next financial year, the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) said on Saturday.
TPA said that preparations for the work are underway; noting that it will start the work by itself and investors will join them as they proceed.
“We are going to start working on part of the project, we have high demand of port services, we don’t want ships to stay at the port for a long time, we want to have option when the Dar Port is overwhelmed,” said TPA Director General, Mr Plasduce Mbossa during a meeting with the East African Business Council (EABC) Board of Directors.
He noted that construction of Bagamoyo Port had reached the dialogue stage, but the investor withdrew from the talks, noting that TPA has started a process of looking for another investor.
The DG said that besides looking for another investor, part of the project will be done by TPA with the aim of reducing waiting time for offloading cargo.
Mr Mbossa said the actual cost for construction of Bagamoyo Port and renovation of Tanga Port is yet to be known, but it will be made public once the preparations are completed.
He further said that, from January next year TPA will start construction of major fuel receiving station at Dar Port to reduce waiting time for the ships to offload cargo.
The DG expounded that construction of the fuel station is part of strategies to continue improving services provision at the port.
He said the construction of the station which will commence in January next year will increase efficiency by reducing offloading time.
Mr Mbossa said that TPA will also increase the number of berths from 12 to 15 to speed up cargo offloading.
He said the authority has increased capacity of cargo services, increase equipment, berths construction, the steps which will improve the port capacity in cargo handling.
On her part, the EABC Chairperson, Ms Angelina Ngalula, said EAC traders are ready to use Dar port because most of the complaints have been addressed.
She said for the Dar port to attract more users, there should be proper coordination with other institutions offering services at the port so that unnecessary bottlenecks could be addressed.
“There are several opportunities for traders from Uganda who have not been fully reached. After the complaints are resolved what is needed is to proceed with business,” she said.
Gracing the Tanzania National Business Council (TNBC) meeting in June last year, President Samia Suluhu Hassan said the government is in talks with Chinese investors on the way forward, to kick off implementation of the Bagamoyo port in the Coast region.
“I have good news here, that we have started discussion with the investor who came for the Bagamoyo port project with the aim of opening it, for the greater benefit of our nation and the investment sector,” she told members of TNBC.
The president also assured that the government will consider national interest in the talks to revive the project. According to her, the government is also focusing on the implementation of Mchuchuma and Liganga projects, saying it is high time the projects take-off.