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The port of Pecém operations rely on competitiveness and agility

The complex has more advantageous rates than the main competitors in the Northeast and is projected as a preferential import-export hub.

by Hugo Renan do Nascimento – Journalist of Diário do Nordeste

The competitiveness of the Port of Pecém, located in the municipality of São Gonçalo do Amarante, in the metropolitan region of Fortaleza, became in recent years more evident with the acquisition of more modern equipments and the expansion of the port infrastructure.

With lower costs, compared to its main competitors, such as Suape, in Pernambuco, Pecém, according to the port operations coordinator, José Alcântara, charges lower rates, such as scanner fees and load weighing.

Pecém's partnership with the Port of Rotterdam is expected to attract new investments and the acquisition of technology capable of providing more efficient processes, making the terminal of Ceará one of the most competitive in the country. "We are very optimistic about this partnership. It opens up an enormous range of opportunities for the port. We expect a great improvement, especially in relation to the attraction of investments for the Cipp area and new technological processes that we will have access to," said Alcântara.

Regarding the costs of cargo handling processes, the operations coordinator also said that the Port of Pecém is considered one of the least expensive complexes in this area in the country. "In terms of container, we have one of the lowest handling costs. The charge of this storage has a lower value than some Brazilian ports. The scanner rate, for example, is well below what is charged in other ports in Brazil," he pointed out.

Rates applied

At the port of Pecém, several fees are charged, depending on the type of cargo, weighing, scanner, storage, among others. For the use of the scanner, the port of Ceará has three types of prices: R$ 80.50 for empty container, R$ 161 for export and R$ 181 for import. In Suape, in Pernambuco, regardless of whether the container is empty or full, the port charges a single value of R$ 348.14.

According to the port price list in Pecém, the weighing rate varies from R$ 0.85 per ton to R$ 22.80 per container. In Suape, the variation ranges from R$ 25.46 per ton to $ 254.54 per heavy container. "In relation to the release of cargo by customs, we have statistical data that in Brazil we are one of the fastest ports in this process. We are one of the most responsive ports in the release of cargo both for export and import," said the coordinator.

According to him, the merchandise that leaves the country takes on average two days to be processed. For imported cargo, it takes a maximum of seven days, depending on the federal and state agencies responsible for the nationalization of the products.

In 2017 the Port of Pecém handled the largest amount of cargo from the start of its operation. In all, 15.8 million tons were exported. By August 2018, in turn, the port already showed a growth of 13% when compared to the same period last year.


According to Alcântara, the import-export processes are different. The export of the cargo takes at maximum two days. "The cargo arrives in advance to the port before the vessel’s arrival, which is scanned and weighed and then placed in the yard. At the time of the vessel’s arrival, about 48 hours or 24 hours before, after all the procedures of the intervening authorities such as customs, Treasury, Federal Revenue, among others, this cargo is released for export and then sent to the Multi-Purpose Terminal (TMUT), where the vessel is going to stay. We release it in advance to get more productivity," he explained.

Once the ship is docked, the service providers, who carry out the process of loading and unloading, are authorized to initiate all procedures. "We have a productivity of 60 movements per hour, that is, every hour, on average, we move 60 containers. we have ships here that range from 300 to 1,200 movements per hour, and the vessels stay from six hours to 20 hours moored in the port".

The import process is more time consuming because there is a more intensive intervention of the customs agencies, responsible for the nationalization of the merchandise. "The cargo taken from the ship is stored in the TMUT, it does not go directly to the yard, we have up to 48 hours for this cargo to be transferred to the yard. This is when the process of nationalization begins. The cargo comes from the TMUT to the yard and on the way it goes through the scanner and the weighing, procedures required by the Internal Revenue Service," he added.

According to him, after this process the load is placed in the yard. "The customs broker, who is the professional representing the importer, presents all the documentation required to the authorities. After that, they give their opinions. If everything is according to the rules, the Federal Revenue concludes the nationalization process. The importer is then allowed to withdraw the goods."

The customs process lasts on average five days. By counting the time that the cargo is retained in the TMUT, there is a maximum period of seven days for the release of the merchandise to the importer. "The carrier hired by the importer loads their trucks with this cargo, the truck then heads for the exit gate, and the port staff still checks all the cargo documentation for the vehicle release."





2 Piers: 4 mooring berths (1 to 4)


Start of TMUT: 2 berths (5 and 6)


Expansion of TMUT: + 2 berths (7 and 8)


Opening of berth 9 in TMUT

Movement in 2017

15,8 million of tons

Monthly average of 1.317.413 tons

Average number of ships per month: 47

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