PARANAGUÁ, BRAZIL — The Port of Paranaguá announced on April 27 that it had reached a historic level of cargo handling in the first quarter of 2016. In imports and exports, the port moved 11.18 million tonnes of cargo and surpassed the previous record of 11.1 million tonnes recorded in 2014.

The record was reached by the performance in exports of bulk solids. In comparison with the first three months of last year, the Port of Paranaguá has increased handling by 17% with over 8.4 million tonnes moved. Within this group, the highlight is the soybeans, which had, in March, the best monthly movement of all time by the port, with 1.6 million tonnes moved.

 "We recorded very good marks in handling, especially grain, anticipating stocks of crop of 2015-16,” said Luiz Henrique Splitting, chairman of the board of the Port of Paranaguá and Antonina (Appa). “The strong pace of movement should remain for the next few months and we will register good numbers.”

 The movement of liquid bulk also closed the first quarter sharply higher. There were over 1.1 million tonnes moved, growth of 17% over the same period last year.

 The good result on the handling of loads is credited also to the package of investments in the port to streamline the operation and gain productivity.

 In the last five years, 511.9 million real ($145 million) have been invested to improve the infrastructure and logistics to the Port of Paranaguá. Four new shiploaders were added replacing equipment from the 1970s. The new shiploaders can move grains 33% faster than the old ones, increasing the speed of loading to 1.5 tonnes per hour.

Ten new cranes, trucks weighing scales, cargo inspection scanners and other components for unloading cargo were added. In addition, sentry boxes were installed along with new computerized access to the sorting yard.