CPPI’s Top 10 Seaports in Africa

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When one talks about global trade, the shipping and maritime sector is first to mind. According to the International Chambers of Shipping, over 90% of goods are transported by ship. Marine Vessel Traffic states that there are over 4702 ports in 170 countries of the world and over 421 in Africa. These seaports house millions of tons in volume of containers and have so far attracted USD15 billion in private investment and USD85 billion including public funding, making this value chain integral to world trade.


There has been significant effort by coastal countries in Africa to meet up with the demand of their economies, while adhering with Global practice and standard. It is to this effect that the World Bank’s Transport Global Practice in association with S&P Global Market Intelligence’s Global Intelligence & Analytics division created the Container Port Performance Index (CPPI).


The CPPI serves as a benchmark for acknowledging improvements efforts made by national governments, port operators, port authorities, development organizations and public and private stakeholders geared towards improving port performance. The CPPI uses; cost, landside connection & services, ship-to-shore interchange, and terminal capacity or space utilization as metrics for compiling this list.


According to the CPPI list, the top 10 seaports in Africa are as follows;

Djibouti Port, Djibouti: The Port of Djibouti, located in Djibouti City, Djibouti comes first on the list for Africa and 26th in the world. The port plays an important role in trade, linking the Horn of Africa to the Persian Gulf thereby being very instrumental to trade in the Far East. It is the fifth biggest sea port in Africa with 18 berths that length up to 2830 meters.


Berbera, Somaliland: On the Horn of Africa, is a not so familiar country, Somaliland, officially the Republic of Somaliland, recognized internationally as de jure part of Somalia. This country is home to the Berbera Seaport which comes up second on the CPPI Africa’s list and 144th in the world. The Berbera Port was used as a naval and missile base for the Somali central government in the past, but it has since been upgraded to a commercial seaport and is influential to trade activity for countries like Ethiopia and the United Arab Emirates.


Conakry, Guinea: The Port of Conakry, Conakry, Guinea is the third on the CPPI list and the 189th in the world. The port is the 22nd largest seaport in Africa and has a capacity of 8,000 TEU and 2,000 vehicles. The port is administered by private operators who are responsible for the development of port infrastructure and equipment.


Dakar, Senegal: At fourth position is occupied by the Dakar Seaport, Dakar, Senegal which is also the 196th in the world. The port is visited by thousand of vessels annually and can handle of 8 million tons of cargo. Its most transported cargo being refined hydrocarbons, crude oil, phosphoric acid, oil, gas, sugar cane, bitumen, caustic soda, chemical products, wine, clinker, sulfur, coal, attapulgite, rice, fertilizer, corn, urea, gypsum and crabs.


Matadi, Democratic Republic of Congo: The Matadi Sea Port is the fifth port on the CPPI’s list and the 197th in the world. The port is responsible for 90 percent of maritime traffic in DR Congo. It is the 20th biggest sea port in Africa and handles over 2.5 million tons of cargo annually.


Tema, Ghana: The Port of Tema is the biggest seaport in Ghana and is proximal to the country’s capital, Accra. It is the CPPI’s sixth top ranked sea port in Africa and the 205th in the world. The port is linked by rail and road network that makes transportation to and from the port easy.


Mogadishu, Somalia: The Port of Mogadishu, located in the capital of Somalia, is the seventh on this list and the 221st on the global list. The port is classified as a major class port and is also the 21st largest seaport in Africa.


Beira, Mozambique: On the eight place is the Beira Sea Port, in the northern part of the Mozambique Channel. It is the 223rd in the world and is very crucial in trade activities within Central Africa. The port is connected by railways from Zimbabwe, Congo, Zambia and Malawi making it the primary port for inland nations.


Freetown, Sierra Leone: Freetown Sea Port, Sierra Leone is the nineth sea port on the CPPI Africa’s list and the 226th in the world. Freetown Sea Port is the primary commercial port of the country and the major import and export hub. It is the 23rd largest sea port in Africa and can berth and operate six vessels at the same time.


Toamasina, Madagascar: The Port of Toamasina is situated on the east coast of Madagascar and faces the Indian Ocean. Toamasina is connected by railway to the country’s capital city of Antananarivo. It is the 10th on the CPPI’s list and 227th in the world. The port handles 90 percent of Madagascar’s container traffic and is managed by the Philippines’ International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI), operating as Madagascar International Container Terminal Services Ltd (MICTSL).

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