Listed port operator Asian Terminals Inc. (ATI) on Tuesday said that its Manila South Harbor is more than ready to handle growing international container volumes, including the quarter cargo rush normally associated with the holiday season, after it set a monthly record for number of containers handled in September.
ATI said that Manila South Harbor, one of two international gateway ports in the country’s capital, posted a record-high 100,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) of international containers for the first time in a single month in September.
Prior to this, it twice broke its all-time record volume, handling over 94,000 TEUs in May and in excess of 95,000 TEUs in June.
Without any signs of slowdown, Manila South Harbor’s production has averaged above the industry standard of 25 gross moves per crane per hour (GMPH), and even recorded world-class levels of over 30 GMPH in previous months, which are comparable to the production of leading global ports in Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong, the company said.
Production is measured by how many containers a crane moves from ship to shore per hour. Higher GMPH reflects efficient handling of containers at berth, which results in faster turnaround of ships and trucks, and ultimately quicker delivery of goods to consignees.
ATI partly attributes these achievements to the highly effective Terminal Appointment Booking System (TABS), an online scheduling facility for the orderly delivery and pull out of containers at the terminal.
Since TABS’ implementation, Manila South Harbor has been able to handle a more than 25 percent increase in truck transactions from a daily average of 1,600 with faster turnaround time.
Handling more transactions in the same fixed timeframe as before means an equivalent reduction in truck numbers on the road as fewer vehicles are needed on the roads at any single time to keep the supply chain going. This makes a welcome contribution to Metro Manila’s road decongestion, ATI pointed out.
Aside from this, ATI’s aggressive investment has delivered greater capacity and efficiency at Manila South Harbor.
In 2015 alone, ATI increased its rubber-tired gantry (RTG) cranes to 23 units, equivalent to a 50 percent increase in fleet size since 2013, to complement its 9 quay cranes (QCs). It also added to its container side loaders to increase its fleet size by 50 percent.
Next year, ATI will take delivery of two brand new QCs and other operations critical cargo handling equipment—alongside the completion of additional container yards, process improvement and technological advancement—that will further ensure higher capacity and efficiency at the Port of Manila in line with future market growth, it said.