ECONOMYNEXT – France based CMA CGM shipping group has engaged in a relay transshipment at Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port with two vessels from the line calling, while Colombo was hit with a Coronavirus outbreak.
“The port is to an extent isolated and we are doing regular PCR checks for all our employees coming into our premises from outside areas,” Sylesh Peerez, Senior General Manager Operations of Hambantota International Port Group said in a statement.
“We greatly appreciate the opportunity given to us by CMA CGM to handle this transshipment operation.
“While it is an advantage for HIP, we are also helping the Colombo Port by providing an alternative to handle transshipment, and moreover, we are ensuring that transshipment volumes stay within Sri Lanka, fulfilling HIP’s promise of positioning itself to build capacity for the country.”
Singapore-flaggd MV Glacier Bay from Jabel Ali, Dubai had berthed at Hambantota and discharged containers on November 25.
Cypress-flagged MV Aldi Wave had arrived from Nava Shiva and docked at Hambantota on November 26 to take the containers to take the containers aboard destined for Durban.
Colombo Port was hit by a Coronavirus outbreak in late November and dozens of workers and gantry operators were quarantined for two weeks causing congestion.
“Since theHambantota Port could handle this move, we quickly got the paperwork ready and handed over the operation to HIP, who efficiently handled the transshipment,” Ikram Ghazali, Group Director, CMA CGM Sri Lanka said.
“Four containers earmarked for Colombo, were also discharged in Hambantota and are to be sent by road under customs supervision.”
He said some CMA CGM vessels had diverted to India due to the congestion at Colombo earlier.
Hambantota Port is operated by China’s CM Ports. (Colombo/Nov30/2020)