Transport and Harbour Dept. raked in $1.038 billion in 2021
Guyana’s Transport and Harbour Department (T&HD) in raked in a whopping $1.038 billion in revenue at the end of 2021.
According to end of year statistics, that figure represents a 21.72 per cent increase from 2020 and is attributed to the government’s removal of COVID-19 travel restrictions, allowing for an increase in trips for varying services.
Passenger traffic also increased by 80 per cent despite the pandemic with a total of 337,661 passengers for 2021 compared to 187,122 in 2020. And further, 100,031 vehicles with 175,307 freight ton of cargo were moved by the department’s vessels in 2021.
But the year was not without challenges, as the report outlined that the operations at T&HD were disrupted in the first quarter due to major mechanical issues with the vessels under its purview. January saw the most downtime with 54 days lost, as the M.V. Barima, the M.V. Kimbia and the M.B. Sandaka were sent for repairs.
Additionally, the report outlined that another one of the major challenges faced by the department was the increase in cargo and vehicles plying the North West District route due to the current incapacity of vessels to balance the demand.
However, this should be alleviated with the expected August arrival of the new North West vessel, currently under construction in India.
The report stated that the vessel would be designed to carry some 294 seated passengers, including 14 crew members, four auxiliary staffers along with 10 officials, 14 cars, two trucks. It also features a cold and cool room and 10 containers for storage of goods.
The contract for the construction of the ferry was awarded to one of India’s leading shipyards- Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) Limited.
The ferry is being constructed under a US $8 million grant and US $10 million Line of Credit assistance from the Government of India and will be used in the North-Western region as well as the South-Western region of Guyana up to Kwakwani, Berbice River.
The T&HD has responsibility for the Supernaam, Wakenaam, Bartica, Leguan and North West District (NWD) ferry services and to further boost the efficiency of its services, a new online ticketing system is set to be introduced in the coming months.