Unstopping Port Elizabeth

I found out why South Africa’s Port Elizabeth will be closing for three weeks in January. The plant was clogged with vessels successfully trying to load or unload—the volume was much greater than the port’s current capacity and ship owners were refusing the pay the demurrage charges.

Now, Portnet officials say they won’t allow any more shipments in or out for the three weeks to lessen the backlog (it’s probably going to take longer). Manganese ore shipments via rail and truck will be allowed to continue, but about 350,000 mt of ore exports are expected to be affected by the shutdown.

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