Gulftainer Brazil attends its first vessel at the port of Recife
Operator’s efficient service large improvement on average productivity level at port
Gulftainer Company Limited (GTL), the largest privately owned ports operator in the world, based in Sharjah, have started their operations in the port of Recife in Brazil in July 2012 and attended their first vessel in the region; discharging 47 steel coils, each weighing 12 tons, in a remarkably short time of 1.7 hours.
The efficient and time-saving service marked a considerable improvement compared to the average productivity level of the port and was highlighted by the local print and electronic media.
On the occasion, Joseph Bruno, the ports and logistics manager for Gulftainer Brazil, said, “We aimed to unload the steel coils in two hours, but managed to finish the work even faster.”
He said the standard operation was to use the ship’s crane to discharge the steel coils one by one, but Gulftainer with its Mobile Harbour Cranes (MHCs) discharged the coils two at a time using specific stevedoring material which was also protected with rubber. The coils were then loaded on to the trucks by using a 16mt forklift which resulted in a 100% increase in productivity levels and zero damages to the cargo and trucks.
The steel coils were brought by the vessel Saga Beija Flor and were loaded at the Port of Singapore in Southeast Asia.
Brazil, notwithstanding certain procedural and regulatory difficulties, is experiencing good growth with its economy expanding at the rate of around 7% and a large population of 200 million people. There was a substantial need and potential for Gulftainer’s services in Recife with the region having sizable exports of granite, malt, barley, sugar, meat, fruits and fish, and with imports of steel and rice and consumer goods. Recife Port, despite being in a city of 4 million people in the Pernambuco region of North Eastern Brazil, has no container services and traffic moves through the often congested Suape Port, around 70 km away.
Gulftainer expanded its operations to Recife after meetings with various shipping lines indicated that productivity in the region was lacking, the Suape port being full and in a monopoly, with inadequate service levels and high costs. All lines either showed willingness to move to a GTL operation in Recife or specifically confirmed they would move as soon as possible once facilities were in place.
The Recife operation involving cooperation with the port management provides; 5 berths, 1100 m of quay and sufficient draft for most ships used by lines’ services, substantial (90,000 m²) yard space, warehousing, reefer storage – with room to expand, harbour cranes and sufficient back-up handling equipment, lines are well aware of Gulftainer’s reputation offering high productivity and efficient terminal operations. Brazilian shipping lines have remarked that Gulftainer’s presence in Recife will make for a welcome change in Brazil.
Gulftainer Group has been operating in the UAE and around the world for over 35 years. In the UAE it operates three main UAE ports: two on behalf of the Sharjah Port Authority - Sharjah Container Terminal (SCT) and Khorfakkan Container Terminal (KCT); and one in Ruwais, Abu Dhabi, on behalf of the international plastics solutions company, Borouge.
Gulftainer has been able to maintain a strong position in the UAE through its ports at Sharjah and Khorfakkan, and KCT was named 'Shipping Port of the Year' at the Annual Supply Chain and Transport Awards (SCATA 2011) in Dubai. In recent years it has also invested in Iraq and now Brazil.