Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA’s) latest request for proposals (RFPs) for the development of a new passenger terminal in the Port of Durban has ended in a nonaward.
“In terms of Section 56 of the National Ports Act, TNPA is mandated to enter into agreements with companies to design, develop, construct, maintain and operate facilities to ensure the provision of port services.
“In conformance with this process and our own Guidelines and Implementation Manual, we embarked on two consecutive rounds of RFPs, the latest of which has demonstrated that there may currently be limited appetite in the market for a private player to pursue this project,” TNPA CEO Richard Vallihu said in a statement on Wednesday.
TNPA commercial and marketing GM Lauriette Modipane explained that the latest RFP was advertised on July 24, 2015, and August 1, 2015.
Twenty-five RFP documents were sold, with 23 represented at a briefing session on August 11, 2015.
“The closing date for the submission of bids was October 2, 2015, and a multidisciplinary bid evaluation took place on October 12, 2015. A single bid was received which was declared administratively and substantively nonresponsive, hence the nonaward,” she stated.
TNPA would now embark on a third open bid process within six months and would also review the scope of the project.
The development of cruise terminals in Durban and Cape Town was in response to the “tremendous” growth that the cruise industry had enjoyed in recent years, which TNPA believed was set for continued growth.
In 2006, Durban handled 50 cruise liners and 67 017 passengers, which, by 2014 had increased by 48% and 224% to 74 vessels and 217 000 passengers respectively.
For the first two months of the 2015/16 cruise season, which would end in early May, Durban had already received 51 vessel calls with 123 719 passengers.
The Durban cruise terminal was one of the Section 56 initiatives identified by the TNPA to encourage private sector participation as a key element of Transnet’s Market Demand Strategy (MDS).
The MDS aimed to significantly contribute to the growth of the South African economy through the investment of in excess of R300-billion in capital investment between 2012 and 2019.
TNPA’s existing cruise terminal – situated at N Shed in the Port of Durban, off Margaret Mncadi avenue – was recently upgraded through a joint initiative between TNPA and container shipping group MSC to align it with international standards.
However, Transnet and the eThekwini municipality had proposed a new, larger, world-class Durban passenger terminal for development along the North Pier just inside the harbour with the aim of supporting the growth of the local tourism sector.
It was envisaged that the terminal would dovetail with planned development around the Durban Point Waterfront and tourist attractions, such as uShaka Marine World.