Plans are underway to increase the capacity of the newly-completed Sepanggar Container Port Terminal (SPTC) in order to meet growing demand.
According to Infrastructure Development Minister Datuk Seri Joseph Pairin Kitingan, ever since the container port was open for business, it has been recording an upward trend in performance.
Speaking after attending a briefing cum work visit to SPTC, Thursday, he said Sabah Port Sdn Bhd (SPSB) has been mulling over the expansion plan.
This is to further improve the port’s capacity to enable it to handle more containers coming into Sabah.
“The port has been recording a commendable increase in terms of operational performance and an expansion plan is necessary and something to look forward to,” he said.
This despite the port with a capacity of 500,000 TEUs (twenty foot equivalent units) handling only about 200,000 TEUs last year as said by its Chief Operating Officer Mohd Sahid Nawab Khan.
Pairin said the privatisation of ports in Sabah has resulted in their management becoming more efficient as reflected by the steady increase of operational performance.
He said that positive performance displayed by the container port showed that it was heading in the right direction.
Explaining the expansion plan, he said it would be carried out based on projected future needs. “The plan would include increasing the size of the container yard and docking areas.”
Costing RM400 million over 22ha in Sepanggar opposite the Naval Base, the port commenced operations on June 9, 2007.