Editorials

Drop in Mombasa Port cargo is a wake-up call

Trucks.

Drop in Mombasa Port cargo is a wake-up call. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The drop in volume of cargo handled by the Mombasa Port for the first time in five years calls for interventions from policymakers.

Official data show total cargo throughput at the port shrank to 33.74 million metric tonnes last year from 34.76 million tonnes the year before.

Policymakers cannot afford to ignore issues such as road tolls, multiple border charges, heavy traffic and poor road conditions along the Northern Corridor.

There have been reports of some businesses ditching this Northern Corridor in favour of the Central Corridor that starts at the Port of Dar es Salaam into Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda and eastern DRC.

Kenya should not sit pretty as the competition between the two corridors rise given that businesses are constantly looking for ways of maximising efficiency and will naturally favour a route that comes with less costs.

A downward review of the road tolls and border charges as well as roads upgrade are among the measures that could be implemented to make Mombasa Port regain its shine.