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Port of Maputo Sets the Standard Achieves ISO 9001:2015 Certification

Credit: Port of Maputo

The Port of Maputo has recently achieved landmark recognition by becoming the first port in Mozambique to receive the prestigious ISO 9001:2015 certification from the Organization for Standardization (ISO). This accolade highlights the port’s commitment to maintaining a high-quality management operation, distinguishing it as a leader in the region.

ISO 9001:2015 certification is founded on five essential principles: risk-based thinking, contextual knowledge, a process-oriented approach, universal application, and rigorous certification and auditing. Bureau Veritas, a certifying agency, painstakingly verified these concepts. Osório Lucas, CEO of the Maputo Port Development Company (MPDC), highlighted that accreditation is a commitment to consumers, partners, and society, not an end goal. According to Lucas, ISO 9001 accreditation is not a target, but rather a commitment to our customers, partners, and society as a whole. Yes, the goal is to obtain the next accreditation, as this is only the beginning of a continual path of improvement and innovation.

The ISO certification was largely facilitated by the proactive management of the port by MPDC, a private company formed by the Mozambican Ports and Railway Company (Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique) and Portus Indico, which includes Grindrod, DP World, and local concessionaire partner, Mozambique Gestores. The port’s management under MPDC is based on a 25-year concession awarded in 2003, extended in 2010 for another 15 years until 2033. This extension was crucial for the full implementation of the port’s Master Plan.

MPDC has made substantial investments to accommodate additional volumes and enhance operational efficiency. Notable recent investments include a $6.9-million hardstand expansion, which has increased the port’s bulk capacity to 12.4 million tons per year. Additionally, the development of a traffic management park now allows the handling of up to 250 trucks outside the port, easing congestion and improving logistics. DP World has also contributed by setting up a dry port near the Komatipoort border, facilitating the movement of containers to and from the quayside at the Port of Maputo.

In parallel with infrastructure investments, the port has focused on developing corridors to support broader investment and operational goals. These efforts have paid off significantly, as evidenced by the port handling a record volume of 31.2 million tons in 2023, marking a 16% increase over the previous year. This growth underscores the port’s rising significance as a vital hub for regional trade and logistics.

The Port of Maputo’s ISO certification is not merely recognition but a testament to its dedication to continuous improvement and excellence. By adhering to international quality standards, the port sets a benchmark for others in the region, demonstrating that efficient management and strategic investments can drive substantial growth and development.

As the Port of Maputo continues on its journey of innovation and improvement, it serves as a model for other ports in Africa and beyond. The commitment to quality management, coupled with strategic investments and partnerships, positions the Port of Maputo as a key player in the global maritime industry. This achievement is a significant milestone, but as Lucas emphasized, it is just the beginning. The port’s ongoing efforts to achieve further certifications and enhance its operations will undoubtedly contribute to its long-term success and the economic development of Mozambique.

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