Cape Town Container Terminal clears most of its backlog

The Cape Town Container Terminal has cleared its backlog, and is now berthing vessels on arrival. Photo: Supplied

The Cape Town Container Terminal has cleared its backlog, and is now berthing vessels on arrival. Photo: Supplied

Published Nov 29, 2023


The Cape Town Container Terminal (CTCT) has cleared most of its backlog, berthing vessels on arrival with only one vessel at anchor.

It said in a statement yesterday that the terminal had increased equipment availability to optimise operations and improve efficiencies.

To date, CTCT said it was operating with 20 rubber-tyred gantry cranes (RTG) and six of these were recently fitted with new engines and three with generators. The availability of RTGs had increased from an average of 15 to 20.

CTCT was now completing maintenance repairs on two additional RTG and had also acquired seven second-hand machines to be delivered in December, which would bring the total number of RTG available to operations to 29.

“These RTG are a stopgap while Transnet Port Terminals finalises the long-term partnership with original equipment manufacturers for all container and multipurpose terminals. The contracts are expected to be concluded by next month and orders for new RTGs at the CTCT will be placed,” it said.

On the landside, the terminal had increased the number of haulers from 32 to 42, while ship-to-shore cranes were averaging at eight, with the ninth machine out for maintenance and repairs.

The recruitment of additional engineering personnel and other critical skills remained a key priority in ensuring maximum reliability of equipment.

It said effective December 1, the terminal would be onboarding the first group of diesel mechanics with more intake, including millwrights, due to start in January 2024.

Andiswa Dlanga, the managing executive of the Western Cape Terminals, said: “The deciduous fruit season, which runs from November to March, has a renowned reputation worldwide and contributes greatly to our economy, providing employment to many South Africans.

“Thus, we are committed to continue putting more initiatives and efforts in optimising our logistics for the success of the season. We apologise to our customers for the delays and thank them for their understanding.”