Transport and Covid-19: responses and resources

The Competitiveness of Ports in Emerging Markets: The Case of Durban, South Africa

How competitive is the port of Durban? What are its main impacts, in terms of economy, environment and traffic? And how well do policies manage to increase local benefits of the port, and mitigate the negative impacts? These are the questions that this publication aims to answer. Its three chapters provide an evaluation of port performance, an analysis of port impacts and an assessment of policies. 

This report is part of the International Transport Forum’s Country-Specific Policy Analysis (CSPA) series. These are topical studies on specific transport policy issues of concern to a country carried out by ITF on request.

Policy Insights

  • Create an inter-departmental freight unit within the city of Durban that can bundle expertise and act as a one-stop shop for freight-related issues in the city. This unit could act as a vehicle to improve coordination on freight transport and engage in joint planning, aligning various actors including Transnet, SANRAL, the national and provincial departments of Transportation and the various departments within the city of Durban.
  • Increase the autonomy of TNPA and streamline decision-making procedures within Transnet. This includes more financial autonomy, e.g. by creating a separate fund at the disposal for TNPA for port infrastructure and maintenance.
  • Focus performance indicators on the performance of the whole supply chain. Currently much focus seems to be on part of the picture (e.g. crane productivity) without much consideration for (and sometimes even at the detriment of) other indicators.
  • Undertake a comprehensive environmental port impact study and implement green-port mitigation policies if necessary

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