Namport Quayside Bulletin - May 2022

Namport on course to becoming the “best performing seaports in Africa”

The Namibian Ports Authority continues to make positive strides toward its vision of becoming the best performing seaports in Africa. The parastatal experienced challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic, global container shortage and blank sailings. Despite these ongoing challenges, the Authority recorded positive growth during its financial year 2021/2022.


Namport CEO, Andrew Kanime confirmed the total year on year cargo handled amounted to 6.5 million tons, indicating an increase of 6%. Vessel visits also increased by 289 vessels or 22%. The increase in vessel calls was predominantly due to an increase in petroleum vessels, Namibian and foreign fishing vessels, foreign tugs as well as research vessels.


The Ports Authority also announced that Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit’s (TEUs) handled amounted to 168,278 of which, 61,106 TEUs or 36% were exported. A further 69,467 TEUs or 41% were imports and 37,705 TEUs or 22% were transshipments. TEUs increased by 12,298 or 8%, year on year.


This increase was mainly due to increased containerized commodities such as copper, charcoal, frozen fish, marble, frozen poultry, sugar, chemicals, scrap steel and wooden products. Namport further indicated that bulk and breakbulk (BBB) volumes handled amounted to 4.4 million, of which, 1.8 million tonnes or 40% were exports, 2.6 million tonnes or 59% imported, and 34,709 tonnes or 1% were transshipped.


Overall the BBB volumes increased year on year by 360,189 tonnes or 9%. This increase came as a result of increased commodities such as petroleum, steel, frozen fish, ammonium nitrate, iron ore, marble, ship spares, manganese ore, and flat cartons.


The volume performance is certainly commendable given the tough operating environment that characterized the financial year that was. Cross border volumes statistics also show that cross-border volumes increased by 10% from 1,464,000 gross tonnages during the 2020/2021 financial year to 1,606,984 gross tonnages during the 2021/2022 financial year.


At least 48% of the volumes are from South Africa, 23% from Zambia, 15% from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Zimbabwe and Botswana 6% each, 2% from Angola and 1% from Malawi.


According to the statistics, major commodities exported from SADC countries through Namibia are currently copper, manganese ore, and wooden products (Timber). Major commodities imported to Namibia destined to SADC Countries are frozen poultry, vehicles, machinery, spare parts, tyres, chemicals for mining use, electrical goods and electrical equipment.


The Namibian Ports also handle an assortment of cross-border cargo imports and exports via 4 main trade corridors; Trans-Kalahari Corridor, Walvis Bay-Ndola-Lubumbashi Corridor, Trans- Cunene Corridor and Trans-Oranje Corridor.


These corridors connect the Ports to the respective SADC markets namely Zambia, DRC, Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Angola. This performance is a testimony of an aggressive approach to developing the ports as the preferred SADC gateways.

Namport produces its 6th Marine Captain

Namport Marine
Master Mariner - Captain Changs Maswahu

Earlier this month, the Namibian Ports Authority announced the conferring of captainship seals to its 6th Captain from the Marine Division. The qualifications were conferred to Captain Changs Maswahu who has been at the Ports Authority for 14 years.


Captain Changs started off as a Cadet in 2005 and enrolled at the Durban University of Technology under the Namport sponsorship program. He completed his S1 and S2 (theoretical) in 2005 and in the year 2006 was sent to sea to complete 12 months of sea time (a requirement to obtain an Officer of the Watch (OOW) Class 3 Certificate of Competency) employed by UNICORN Shipping as a Cadet.


He obtained his OOW CoC in 2008 and was employed as Third Navigation Officer and promoted to Second Navigation Officer onboard Unicorn Tankers between 2008 and 2012. At the same time, Captain Maswahu pursued his piloting career at NAMPORT, completing and passing the Authority’s sponsored STC pilot training in 2014 and obtaining pilot licenses 3 000 GRT up to 30 000 GRT.


His increasing passion for the industry propelled him to further his studies in 2016 (S3 and S4), obtaining his Chief Officer Certificate of competency in 2017 and continued at sea for another twelve months (12), employed as Chief Officer.


Ultimately all his experiences and studies would result in him attaining a Master Mariner Unlimited Certificate of Competency this year (2022). Captain Maswahu also holds a Diploma for Harbour Masters which he obtained from the Lloyd’s Maritime Academy in December 2020, also financed by Namport.


Captain Maswahu hails from the Zambezi region and says that the journey was full of hurdles as the course of studies demanded every facet of his being from emotional, and physical to mental commitment. Attaining this level of competency and qualification requires dedication, determination and hard work.


Talking to Captain Lukas Kufuna about the latest achievement of his colleague and protégé he said, “I am tremendously proud of Captain Changs, he wanted to give up at some point due to the strain of the course, but we encouraged him to continue and today he has emerged victorious, it just proves that one must never give up, hard work truly does pay off”.


Captain Kufuna’s personal goal as Port Captain at the Port of Walvis Bay is to produce eight (8) Namibian Class One pilots and is well on his way to achieving this target as currently, six (6) pilots have attained their qualifications under his mentorship.


The training that trainee pilots undergo is internationally recognized, as it complies with the International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulations, recommendations and conventions, the IALA guidelines, Training and Qualification Standard of EMPA (European Maritime Pilot Association) which places the Namibian pilots on par with their counterparts in terms of skills and competency.


Word of encouragement from Captain Changs Maswahu, “I would like to encourage young Namibians to consider pursuing a career in piloting, especially young women as this industry is dominated by men.  I believe, a career in piloting at NAMPORT is one that is not populated just as yet as the Company still employs foreign Nationals due to the shortage of class 1 holders in the country. To my fellow Namibian Trainee Pilots already in the program, I would like to say keep pushing regardless of the challenges today, class 1 is just a few miles away and very much obtainable. Finally, thanks to all those who believed and supported me throughout this long journey”.

Namport Maritime

Namport’s “Catch them Young” students amongst top performers in South Africa

In 2012 Namport entered into an agreement with the Lawhill Maritime Centre as part of Simon’s Town School in Cape Town, South Africa. The program, which aims at celebrating high performers, targets Grade 9 learners who progress to Grade 10 from previously disadvantaged backgrounds in Namibia.


Annually, two best performing learners are selected through Namport’s equitable selection process. These successful candidates then pursue their educational journey with a more maritime focused approach. The above agreement is in an effort to propel one of the company’s key strategic objectives which are ‘to build and retain a sustainable and diverse talent pipeline’.


The rationale behind the Scheme is to ensure the establishment of a strong maritime career foundation for the ports in particular and entire Namibia in general. It is expected that this will address the skills deficit faced by the maritime industry in the country.


The Lawhill Maritime Centre offers two specialized subjects (Maritime Economics and Nautical Science) for learners in Grades 10, 11 and 12. To date, twelve (12) learners have benefited from this program of which eight (8) have successfully completed the program and proceeded to the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, in pursuit of maritime degrees in either Deck or Engineering.


Despite experiencing two years of disrupted schooling due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, Two Catch-them-Young students still managed to deliver impressive academic results for the matric class of 2021. Congratulations are surely in order for Lendicha Kuvare and Terthu Malumani who walked away with four distinctions each. They are currently enrolled at the University of Cape Peninsula.

Otjinungua Community in Opuwo is not too far to benefit from the Namport Social Investment Fund

The Namibian Ports Authority (Namport), through its Social Investment Fund (NSIF) recently donated two (2) refurbished forty (40) foot containers to the Otjinungua community.


The first container will serve as a clinic facility, including an ablution/sickbay and consulting rooms to improve health care service to the community and the second container will serve as accommodation for the full-time nurse on site. The investment comes at the cost of N$350,000.00 and includes refurbishing of the two (2) containers as well.


In a speech delivered on behalf of Mr Elias Mwenyo, Trustee member of the NSIF, he reiterate the fact that “Namport through the NSIF did not think twice about this project because if COVID-19 has taught us one thing in these past two years, it is that the price tag on health is immeasurable and as stakeholders, we should join hands with government’s efforts in availing basic needs to our people as far as resources permit us”.


The Otjinungua community of seven-hundred (700) Ovahimba people, situated 330 kilometers from the closest town of Opuwo will now have access to their own health facilities, a fact that is without a doubt very reassuring to the frail and elderly people.


This project was successfully accomplished with strategic partners such as Wilderness Safaris, Children in the Wilderness, Round Table Hochland 154, Bank Windhoek, August 26 Holdings, Nampower Foundation, PE Minerals, Green Teenage Team, Office of the Governor of the Kunene region and Maurenfluss Conservancy.


The Namport Social Investment Fund (NSIF) is the vehicle through which the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) contributes to the development of a better Namibia by investing in corporate social responsibility projects that seek to uplift the lives and communities of all Namibians.


Since the inception of the Fund over sixteen (16) years ago, the NSIF has responded to the social development needs of the communities through a prudent sharing of Namport’s resources. The Fund’s corporate social investment strategic thrust is based on building the Namibian house, based on four (4) focus areas namely health, quality education, environment and entrepreneurship for the benefit of the community.
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