The Visakhapatnam port trust seems to have handled the pandemic better than its counterparts at least in the exports category.
Despite the COVID-19 situation VPT registered a growth of 17% in its exports compared to the same period last year.
Exports from VPT increased to 64.45 lakh tonnes as compared to 55.17 lakh tonnes of previous year thus registering a growth of 17% said its chairman Mr K Rama Mohan Rao, IAS.
Imports on the other hand declined by 26%. Imports in Q1 2020-21 declined to 85.39 lakh tonnes as compared to 116.04 lakh tonnes of previous year.
Overall cargo handled at Port of Visakhapatnam declined by 10.6%.
This decline seemed rather restricted when compared to most of the other Major Ports in the country that saw a decline in excess of 19%.
The total cargo handled during the first quarter of 2020-21 at VPT stood at 153.27 lakh tonnes (15.33 million tonnes) as compared to 170.95 lakh tonnes(17.10 million tonnes) of corresponding period of 2019-20.
It was further stated that Port Railways recorded growth in volumes by handling a quantity of 71.00 lakh tonnes as against 70.54 lakh tonnes handled during previous year.
“VPT exports increased to 64.45 lakh tonnes from 55.17 lakh tonnes of previous year. We have taken many measures at VPT to promote traffic volumes.”
— Mr. K. Rama Mohana Rao, IAS, VPT Chairman
There was a decline in import of Coal, both Coking coal and Steam coal to the tune of 18.5 lakh tonnes which impacted the cargo traffic at VPT significantly.
Measures taken by VPT to promote traffic volumes:
Ä End-to-end logistic service offered by VPT at economic cost to TANGEDCO resulting in a volume of 2.70 lakh tonnes of thermal coal during the first three months as against NIL in previous year.
Ä Existing contract for transportation of coal from MCL/Ib Valley to TANGEDCO extended for one more year
Ä Steel unloading at the Visakhapatnam Port Logistic Park (SPV with Balmer Lawrie and Co.)is permitted to provide additional unloading line to ease steel rake congestion.
Ä Keeping in view of surge in iron and steel five railway sidings are ear-marked and one more siding is being developed.
Ä Concession on railway terminal charges up to 50%, for unloading (mechanical/manual) iron ore rakes extended up to 31-3-2021.
Ä Two sidings are dedicated for iron ore for manual unloading of iron ore. Development of another siding at oil loop line is being done.
Ä Pig iron manning scale has been reduced to attract more cargo
Ä Concession on vessel related charges for container traffic extended up to 31-3-2021.
Ä Permissible beam (width) of vessels is increased from 32.5 meters to 36 meters are permitted in the inner harbour.