Colombo Port Continues Growth in 2021 TEU Levels
Colombo Port in Sri Lanka has processed 7.25 million TEU in 2021, a near 6 per cent growth on 2020 levels.
The growth of the nation’s main port has now moved Colombo to the 22nd largest port in the world, according to the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA).
SLPA chief Prasantha Jayamanna told the local Daily FT that the improvement was welcome, adding that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has requested elevating the port’s position to within top 15 by 2025.
The Colombo Port saw volume increases of 5.8 per cent from the previous year, with transshipment volumes growing by 4.2 per cent to 5.85 million TEU.
SLPA terminals specifically saw a 5 per cent growth to 2.2 million TEU for the calendar year.
There are currently three container terminals at the Colombo Port — the Jaya container terminal (JCT) operated by the SLPA, the South Asian gateway terminal (SAGT), and Colombo international container terminal (CICT), which is operated and managed by China Merchants Port.
Earlier this year Colombo Port began phase two of its Eastern Terminal extension which will allow it to handle the largest container vessels.
Construction began on 12 January 2022 under the patronage of President H.E. Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa. This extension will see the length of the terminal increase to 1,320 metres.
The project is scheduled to be completed on 4 July 2022. Once completed, the facility will consist of 12 giant cranes and 40 normal cranes, to be supplied by China’s Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Company (ZPMC).
Ports Minister Hon. Rohitha Abeygunawardena has said the development will cost around $1 billion, set to be financed by local funds.
“An extent of 420m of the Eastern Terminal has already been completed so far. Once completed, the terminal, which will be 1,320m in length, contributes the SLPA to handle 14 million BTU annually. At present the SLPA handles 7 million BTU annually,” said the Minister.
The construction contract of this project was awarded to the Sri Lankan-based Access Engineering and the China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC).