ESL set to bolster capacity to adjust to export increase

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Addis Ababa, 21 March 2014 (WIC) - The Ethiopian Shipping and Logistics Enterprise (ESL) is determined to strengthen its service to meet the ever increasing export increase of the country, Enterprise CEO Ahmed Tusa said.
Opening Enterprise annual meeting with agents in various countries yesterday, Ahmed said Enterprise's has now 13 multipurpose ships and two new tankers raising its global market share from 14 to 39 per cent. More service delivery strategies and facilities would be in place to ensure its global competitiveness and to adjust to the export volume of the country which is expected to show significant growth, he noted.
Ahmed said ESL is handling about 50 per cent of containerized cargo import with its present capacity, which was below ten per cent two years back. Though it was facing some challenges from the outset, the multimodal transport system is registering better results in terms of transit time and cost, he added. “After implementing the new system of moving goods from ports loading to the dry ports in Ethiopia, the dwelling time at Djibouti Port is reduced from over 35 days to one week on the average,” the CEO said.
Deputy Executive Officer Chief Engineer Alemu Ambaye on his part said the Enterprise has put supporting the export-led economy of the country at the forefront of its goals in accordance with the Growth and Transformation Plan(GTP). In addition to expanding ports and purchasing of various machinery, the Enterprise has increased its carrying capacity from 120,000 to 400,000 tonnes at present, he said.
“Even this capacity may not be enough to meet the service demand for export that might grow in the coming few years. We have to expand our service, support the sector with modern technology and proper management,” he added.
The Enterprise wants to create awareness among all stakeholders on the dire need to create a huge shipping company for the country in the shortest time possible, he said. As many development projects are underway in the country, the Enterprise has to increase the number of its own ships side by side with using slots.
A paper presented at the three-day meeting underway at Sheraton Addis briefed its agents drawn from about 40 countries on the Enterprise's long and challenging journey to reach the present state and future prospects. The agents, who are scheduled to visit the Modjo Dry Port, are expected to discuss the partnership, the challenges faced and the future directions with the Enterprise. (EH)