Hapag-Lloyd in a joint venture with Ocean Network Express and Uni-feeder are adding the port of Maputo, capital of Mozambique, on their itinerary to offer a biweekly direct service linking Jebel Ali (AE), Mundra (IN), and Maputo (MZ). With this simplified three-port cycle, Hapag-Lloyd has established a new route between the west coast of India and the east coast of Africa.
“The three-port rotation and competitive transit times are designed to support your cargo planning with ease and certainty,” Hapag-Lloyd said, and country manager Lilantha Nugawela confirms that interest from South African citrus exporters is high.
“We received very positive responses for both imports and exports, and it is important to book cargo early,” he says.
Two container vessels have loaded citrus from Maputo since the middle of last month, with the third vessel expected to arrive this Saturday. The vessel operator is Uni-feeder.
Dawie Scholtz, general manager of the Maputo Port Fruit Terminal, remarks that they have been very satisfied with the level of interest and growth in new clients. "We still have ample capacity."
The Maputo Port Fruit Terminal still has ample capacity for South African citrus (photo supplied by MPFT)
“It’s great that shipping lines are looking at ways to help us”
Last week Cape Five Exports has announced its shipment of citrus for the Middle East from Maputo. “The current challenges with the SA ports has meant we have been on the lookout for new logistics opportunities and we are proud to support Hapag-Lloyd with this new route as the first fruit export company to do so.”
“Durban is currently very congested. Traditionally we’d deliver cargo to the City Deep ambient rail terminal where we’d pick up empties and then rail it to the stacks in Durban, just to avoid the congestion at cold stores and around Durban,” explains Justine Green, logistics manager at Cape Five Exports.
Cape Five Exports sent a trial run of citrus through Maputo to Jebl Ali (photo supplied by Cape Five Exports)
“With the flood damage to rail infrastructure and general rail challenges, we are unable to fully optimize this option. Vessels are overbooked, there are not enough containers available, so when we heard about Maputo we decided to do a test run of six containers of citrus.”
It was their first time to do a transborder shipment at the South African-Mozambique border, which went smoothly; there is a green lane to fast-track reefer trucks.
She adds that the transit time from Maputo to the Middle East is ten to twelve days, and from Durban to the Middle East it takes around 12 to 14 days. Their trial run is due to arrive in Jebl Ali later this week.
“The opportunity to load out from Maputo has come as a godsend and it is an exciting opportunity. It’s great that shipping lines are looking at different ways to help us move our cargo, not just relying on the old, traditional ways of doing it.”
For more information:
Tel: +258 21 312 354/5
Maputo Port Fruit Terminal
Tel: +27 79 945 8632