34 Liberation Avenue
PMB Box 617, Banjul
Tel no: 4228283 / 4227266
Cables: Gamports Banjul
Telex: 2235 GAMPORTS GV
The (GPA) Gambia Ports Authority is charged with administering
the docks situated at Banjul. It was created in 1972
by the Ports Act to operate the ports of the Gambia
on a commercial basis.
It was given the mandate to manage and provide all necessary
marine and harbour facilities, cargo handling equipment
and storage as well as to regulate, enhance and to carry
out regular maintenance of the complex.
The facilities were previously under the control of
the now defunct Marine Department. The GPA is
owned by the Government which has a share capital of
16.3 million Dalasis.
The seaport stands at the very core of the Trade Gateway
Project which it is intended to enable The Gambia to
establish itself as a globally competitive export and
processing center. It makes up almost 90% of the Gambia's
total foreign trade in weight and volume terms.
The port is mostly used for loading and offloading the
cargo for container ships, tankers, role-on / role-off
and ocean going cargo vessels. It also provides a maritime
base for the Gambian National Navy because of its ideal
position at the mouth of the river.
In 2001 the management and operations of the ferry service
was taken away from the Public Transport Corp. and given
over to the GPA. Included in the transfer were the other
eight ferry crossing points in the country.
Over the years the development of the port of Banjul
has been done in various stages. In 1972 there was a
122 m jetty, a 102m Inside Back with two warehouses
and 10 large container cargo.
Towards the end of the decade and into the 1980s the
growth in international trade meant the port required
more open storage cargos as opposed to closed storage.
The construction of an extra jetty was carried out which
was 123m in length and 30m wide. In 1995 the expansion
of cargo and container traffic necessitated more
expansion. Then there was an urgent need for dedicated
roll-off facilities and further expansion of one
of the jetties (123m) by an extra 177 m.
Latitude 13° degrees 27° North and longitude 16° degrees
34' West. It is located on the mouth of the Gambia River,
one of the world's busiest shipping lanes.
The execution of the Port Master Plan created in 1991
involved the expansion and modernisation of the capacity
of the port through increased investments.
These investments have enhanced cargo handling to a
yearly 1.5 million tons, total pier length to 750 metres,
covered storage area is 3,000 sq. metres and uncovered
storage capacity is 38,000 sq. metres.
The Gambia Ports Authority has developed a set of computer
applications called POPS for Windows, using in-house
These applications have been created to satisfy the
information needs of the port's management and to enhance
the operational control requirements of a modern seaport.
The system can handle over 1,000 pc users at the same
Wharf Mooring Capacity:
There are currently five berths and role-on / role-off
ramp in operation for suitable sea vessels.
The New Banjul Jetty's outer dock 3A and 3B can accommodate
a maximum of 2 container ships for vessels with draughts
of between -12 to -14 metres. The Banjul Wharf inner
dock no. 2 (its outer berth has a navigation depth of
between -9.5 and -12.0 metres while that of the inner
berth is -8.0 metres) and the New Banjul Jetty's inner
dock no. 4 are deemed to be appropriate for smaller
vessels such as fishing boats and coast-going vessels.
Berth no. 1 is considered without restriction since
all other non-container vessels could be mooring there.
However, it is mainly utilised by oil tankers and general
purpose cargo ships. The New Banjul Jetty's inner dock
no. 4 and the Banjul Wharf Jetty's inner dock no. 2
are deemed to be appropriate for smaller vessels such
as fishing boats and coast-going vessels.
Bulk Handling Facilities:
The port can deal with different kinds of dry or liquid
bulk items. These are petroleum products (HFO, aviation
fuel, diesel and liquid/solid fats), loose cement, groundnut
cake and oil.
Standard Seaborne Cargo:-
Break bulk are goods brought in bags and full vessels
or holds commodities such as sugars, flour, rice, and
fertiliser. On average such vessels offload between
5-7 thousand tonnes. Gross performance varies between
7 to 13 tonnes per hook and hour gross. Bagged cargo
is delivered directly from the vessel to importer's
There is an Oil Boom with a length of 187.5m and a Puma
generator for its deployment. Pipeline pumping efficiency
is 147 tonnes per gross hour. The expected rate of gross
unloading from tanker to road vehicle is 31 tonnes per
Bulk cement is accepted in batches of a maximum of 8,000
- 10,000 tonnes per ship. The vessels are unloaded
of their commodities by a mobile and electric vertical
screw conveyor (Siwertel) at the quayside with a capacity
of 85,000 - 100,000 tonnes per hour.
Average Waiting Times:
The average length of time a ship spends anchored up
at the terminal for bringing items on board
or off-loading is largely determined by the sort of
cargo it is carrying. Container (box) and role-on /
role-off ships stay at the terminal for an average time
of 24 hours, while ships with a displacement tonnage
of 15,000 metric tonnes lie alongside an average of
Note: The port has a deep sheltered anchorage with no
record of piracy to date.