South African Ports Become Smart

All eight commercial ports across South Africa’s coastline are now using Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA) new R79 million web-based Integrated Port Management System (IPMS), following the rollout of the system to the Port of Richards Bay on November 26, 2015.

TNPA began registering Richards Bay port users onto the IPMS network from November 23.

The MS Insignia passenger vessel was the first to be brought into the port on November 26 using the new smartPORT technology.

“We are extremely pleased to see the completion of this strategic project that aims to support the broader objectives of the Transnet Market Demand Strategy (MDS) – which is now in its fourth year – in terms of efficiency and productivity. This journey began in 2008 and is the culmination of various feasibility studies where we identified the need for an automated and web-based system to improve port operations, strengthen efficiencies and enhance competitiveness,” TNPA Chief Executive, Richard Vallihu, said.

IPMS has been rolled out to the Ports of Durban, Cape Town, Saldanha, Port Elizabeth, Ngqura, East London, Mossel Bay and now recently Richards Bay over four months beginning late July 2015.

“Apart from a technological competitive edge, IPMS will bolster transparency and efficiencies in the port while enabling business continuity for our customers, visitors and general stakeholders,” Richards Bay Port Manager, Preston Khomo, said.

The system, jointly developed by India-based company Navayuga Infotech and their South African partner Nambiti Technologies, replaces manual processes that were previously used for monitoring marine operations, vessel traffic services and terminal performance and enables key port operations to be managed online and in real time across TNPA’s eight commercial ports.

Since IPMS was first introduced in July, more than 300 vessel agents have registered onto the system and more than 1600 vessel arrival notifications have been submitted across all eight ports.