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Lamu Port unveils state-of-the art ship-to-shore cranes

The Kenya Ports Authority has acquired three new ship-to-shore cranes for the Lamu Port, worth Kshs 4 billion, aimed at boosting transshipment business across the country’s Northern corridor.

Speaking to the media during the launch of the three ultra-modern state-of-the art cranes at Kililana Port, KPA Managing Director Captain William Ruto stated that the three cranes would increase the port’s capacity to handle any shipment coming from the Middle East or China.

Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Capt. William Ruto briefs the media after he received the new ship to shore (STS) gantry cranes at the port of Lamu. Photo by Andrew Hinga

The KPA MD further revealed that the Authority would also be importing four Rubber Tire Gantry Cranes that would further aid in ensuring the Lamu Port’s efficiency in handling transshipment business.

The arrival of the three state-of-the-art Super Post Panamax Ship-to-Shore (STS) gantry cranes aboard a heavy loader carrier, MV Zhen Hua 24, will position the Port of Lamu as a transshipment hub.

The KPA MD further hailed the move to bring in the ship-to-shore cranes as a milestone in ensuring the viability of the LAPSSET project and the Northern Corridor is realised.

“The national government is committed to ensuring the security of the LAPSSET corridor is achieved,” he added, adding that adequate personnel and resources have been disbursed to ensure investor confidence is maintained.

He further said that Ethiopia and South Sudan have both voiced their commitment to using the Lamu Port as well as the Northern Corridor, with plans already underway to rehabilitate parts of the LAPSSET road that were previously affected by rains.

The Port of Lamu is the first component of the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia-Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor project, which is envisioned to have 23 berths. Already, three berths with a draft of 17.5 metres and a turning bay of 500 metres have been completed.

Since the first berth was operationalized in 2021, it has been handling transshipment cargo destined for Mozambique, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Seychelles, Comoros and Madagascar, including containerised and bulk cargo as well as motor vehicles.

The country has received praise for the operationalization of Lamu’s first three berths from the Republic of South Sudan and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.

By Amenya Ochieng and Sadik Hassan

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