Shipping Enterprise postpones truck purchase

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The Ethiopian Shipping and Logistics Services Enterprise () postponed the opening of the bid document for the procurement of 150 brand new heavy duty trucks in relation to the bid document adjustment on axle load.
Wondimu Denbu, deputy CEO of the Enterprise for Corporate Service, told Capital that the international bid was expected to be opened in the current week, while in connection with bidders who wanted further clarification about the bid document on the point of axle load the opening has been postponed for the third week of October.
He said that the enterprise has targeted removing some trucks that are not suitable for operation which it handles on the import export corridor mainly on the Djibouti outlet.
Due to that the state multimodal monopoly is looking to purchase 150 heavy duty trucks to improve its service and replace the old ones.
Currently ESLSE has about 440 trucks including the 215 trucks, from one of the popular brand Renault Trucks, a French automotive company. The Renault trucks are high quality, but the others are not in good condition, according to experts.
Besides the 215 Renault trucks that were purchased about four years ago the enterprise had a collection of 230 that came from different organizations when the enterprise formed under amalgamation of the historical Ethiopian Shipping Lines, the Dry Port Services Enterprise and the Maritime and Transit Services in 2012.
“The trucks are very old as per our current study 123 trucks will be removed during the current budget year. After one trip to Djibouti they have to go to maintenance, which is uneconomic for the enterprise,” Wondimu said.
He said that the current bid opening is postponed due that the enterprise took time to get clarification from Ethiopian Roads Authority (ERA) and Ministry of Transport, who are responsible for giving clarification for maximum axle load capacity for trucks in the country.
“We have mentioned the axle load capacity that is not in use in the country because bidders want clarification that we should approach the two government organizations for more clarification and provide the information to bidders,” the Deputy CEO explained. He said the bid will be opened on October 20.
Yoseph Tamiru, Pavement Management Team Leader at ERA, told Capital that ESLSE has been requested to import 4 axle load capacity truck that is not allowed in the country. This means they were looking to import the combination of 4 axle trucks, according to the expert at ERA.
He said that his authority explained the issue to ESLSE.
“In the current condition we allowed tri axle that means the combination of three axle and we have also told them that they can buy trucks designed based on the tri axle,” he explained.
Yoseph remembered that the agreement that Ethiopian signed under COMESA and other treaties the four axle truck is not allowed to be driven on the street.
He said that the crucial issue is putting axles on combination line. It might be seven or eight axle trucks shall import but the maximum combination of axle must not be more than three axles.
ESLSE planned to increase the axle and enable to load more tonnage since the weight disburse on every axles since the number of axles has increased.
Such kind of four axle trucks are not driven in the countries where they are made, according to Yoseph argued. Over loading is the challenge of road designed life, while ERA is doing its best to control axle load.
As per the country law the maximum axle load allowed is 58 tones, but mostly trucks in the country load 40 tones.
ESLSE is also leasing trucks from private transporters besides using its own. In the past budget year ESLSE, which is one of the mega public enterprises tabled on the latest privatization process on partial sales, has earned 1.7 billion birr.
Roba Megerssa, CEO of ESLSE, said that in the current budget year the enterprise has targeted to transport 7.5 million tons in commodities, which was 4.5 million tons in the past budget year.