Cargo traffic at 12 major ports fall for the 8th consecutive month in November

Grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, the 12 major ports of India witnessed a decline in cargo traffic for the 8th consecutive month in November, informed the Indian Ports Association (IPA).

During the April-November period of the current fiscal, the cargo traffic at 12 major ports that are under the control of the Centre dropped by 10.53 per cent to 414.30 million tonnes (MT) as compared to 463.05 MT during April-November of the last fiscal.

“The cargo traffic at 12 major ports declined considerably March onwards due to the adverse impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

~Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister of Shipping

All ports barring Mormugao — which recorded a 17.58 per cent increase in cargo handling to 12.20 MT — saw a negative growth.

Cargo handling at Kamrajar Port (Ennore) nosedived 29.65 per cent during April-November to 14.46 MT, while the other ports like Chennai, Cochin and Mumbai saw their cargo volumes dropping by about 17 per cent during the said period. The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) suffered a sharp decline of 15 per cent.

Deendayal Port also reported a 10.15 per cent drop in cargo volume while VO Chidambarnar recorded a dip of 11.97 per cent and cargo handling at New Mangalore dropped by over 7 per cent. Paradip Port recorded a decline of 1.38 per cent.

In the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak, sharp declines were also witnessed in handling of containers, coal and POL (petroleum, oil and lubricant) among other commodities.

These 12 major ports handle about 61 per cent of the country’s total cargo traffic. They handled 705 MT of cargo last fiscal.

Mr Mandaviya said in the Parliament in September that there was a considerable decline in the total traffic, containers traffic and other than containers traffic in March, April, May, June, July and August, 2020 as compared to the corresponding months in 2019. The minister, however, had added that recovery has started since June 2020.

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