In a sign that the pandemic-hit economy is fast returning to normalcy, the country's biggest container handling port, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) handled 459,920 TEUs (twenty feet equivalent unit) in December, 2020, which was the highest container volume handled in the last 20 months.
The container traffic increased by 9.90 per cent over the same month of last year and the overall traffic grew by 10.04 per cent to 6.37 million tonne from 5.79 million tonne handled in December-2019.
Also in rail operations the port handled a record 556 rakes in December 2020. The average monthly terminal handling time of trains improved to 4.42 hours in December from 6.18 hours in September.
The average monthly turn-around time of trains (from placement to removal of trains) also reduced to 9.35 hours in December from 13.34 hours in September.
In the calendar year 2020, the total container traffic handled by the port was 4.47 million TEUs, with APM Terminals Mumbai (GTI) handling 1.69 million TEUs, DP World NSIGT - 0.77 million TEUs, DP World NSICT - 0.64 million TEUs , JNPCT - 0.56 million TEUs and BMCT handled 0.81 million TEUs. Overall traffic handled in the CY 2020 was 62.32 million tonnes including Liquid and other cargo.
Sanjay Sethi, Chairman, JNPT said: "CY 2020 has been a challenging year for all of us but we can look back with a certain degree of satisfaction on what we did to keep JNPT up and running and help maintain the supply of essential goods and trade flows critical for the country. Credit is also due to the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways for the swift actions it took to deal with the fallout of the pandemic on trade and transport."
During 2020, the Centralized Parking Plaza became operational, helping in boosting Direct Port Entry, save cost and time for Export Containers. In the year, the port also received the operational status for India's First Port Based Special Economic Zone, JNPT SEZ.
JNPT also completed the construction of a coastal berth with the capacity to handle 2.5 million tons of coastal cargo including liquid cargo, keeping with its commitment towards providing world-class amenities to stakeholders and to give momentum to coastal shipping and will immensely boost coastal cargo trade.