Malaysia targets 9M boxes on first-half surge

Malaysia targets 9M boxes on first-half surge

On the strength of strong first-half traffic, Malaysia is forecasting minimum volume of 9 million TEUs through its ports this year.

Malaysia's ports moved 4.93 million TEUs in the first half, against 4.2 million in the same period last year, Transport Minister Chan Kong Choy said, an increase of 17.5 percent.

Kelang, which serves the capital of Kuala Lumpur, leads the way with 2.35 million TEUs or 47.7 percent of the country's total, followed by Tanjung Pelepas with 1.6 million TEUs or a 32.5 percent share.

Chan said if the current level of 823,000 TEUs a month is maintained, total volume for the year could reach 8.9 million TEUs. "But I still want to hit 10 million TEUs. Now that I have made this promise, we have to double our effort to get the 10 million boxes," he said.

Chan said the ministry has set a target for Pelepas and Kelang to handle 3.6 million TEUS and 4.8 million TEUs respectively this year. "Since 54 percent of total cargo at PTP is transshipment, the port has been focusing as the main transshipment hub for Southeast Asia," Chan said.

Pelepas in the past several years successfully wooed huge numbers of transshipments by Maersk Sealand and Evergreen Maritime Corp. from neighboring Singapore.