Due to the lockdown challenges arising from the coronavirus outbreak, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), India’s premier container port plunged 37% during the month of April to what was a year ago, registering a throughput of 283,802 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in container handling.
However, this presented rail haulage a chance to improve its share of boxes evacuated to and from the port in the face of acute shortage of trucks and drivers. JNPT increased its rail coefficient to 22.39% against the previous financial year monthly average of 16.04%, by handling 499 container trains, highest-ever in a month.
The import container volume at JNPT in April 2020 is 80% of what was handled in April 2019 and overall throughput is 63% of the cargo handled during the same period last year.
Altogether, the port handled 167 vessels in April 2020 and the overall turnaround time on Port a/c improved to 33 hrs from 39 hrs in 2019.
“This is a result of the perseverance of our workforce and in time diligent effort and support of all the stakeholder of JN Port. Our commitment towards ensuring that trade doesn’t come to a standstill even during the lockdown has resulted in JNPT achieving these numbers. The entire family of JNPT will put in efforts to constantly evolve our operational efficiency and the port’s performance by maintaining all the safety protocols,” Sanjay Sethi, Chairman, JNPT said.
JNPT has taken various measures to limit the impact of the outbreak while also protecting the trade channel from any disruption.
The port announced an extension of waiver/remission/relaxations at its container terminals from April 15 to May 03. Some of the proactive measures taken by JNPT include extended relief to the trade in order to support Port users and end users like – No dwell time charges will be levied for all import/export containers moved by road and rail (CFS/DPD/Empty/ICD), No shifting charges will be levied for change of mode (i.e. truck to rail or rail to truck) and No shifting charges will be levied for DPD containers moved by rail after 48 hours to ICD Mulund or ICD Tarapur from April 13 as they have been declared as ‘extended port gates’ of JNPT.
The port has also prepared an action plan in the wake of this coronavirus crisis for avoiding congestion and created sufficient storage capacities inside and outside the Port.
Extended Port Gate facility has been made available for direct port delivery (DPD) containers at Mulund and Boisar. Additional storage capacity has also been created at CWC, Dronagiri node where cargo is being moved through En-block movement.