It is indeed a proud moment for the Cochin Port family. The Port has scaled a new peak in cargo handling in 2018-19 by achieving a throughput of 32.02 MMT, which is 10% growth over the cargo handled in 2017-18. The performance on the financial front is also very impressive as the Port has achieved 11.15% growth in operating income. We could control the increase in operating expenditure to 2.02% during 2018-19 compared to previous years. This has helped in increasing the operating profit to Rs. 210.87 Crores which is 32.13% higher than that of 2017-18. The net profit has increased from 13.55 Crores (2017-18) to 19.2 Crores (2018-19) ie. 41.7% growth. We could improve the operating ratio from 69.71% to 63.99% in 2018-19. The Port could make an additional payment of Rs. 27.41 Crores to the Pension Fund Corpus, over and above the normal pension payments during 2018-19. Also, the Port has made the first installment of Rs. 55.85 Crores towards repayment of GoI loan amounting to Rs. 558.53 Crores.It is noteworthy that we could pay the wage revision arrears to Class III & IV employees and pensioners in April, 2019.
I would like to place on record the commendable efforts made by the employees of Cochin Port Trust and the members of the Port fraternity in regaining the glory of Cochin as a reliable transit point for the logistics sector world over. The contributions of all departments in ensuring cost effective service and delivering high productivity standards are also noteworthy. Curtailing the expenditure on dredging by following the nautical depth concept was very helpful in containing operational expenditure, which is very high in Cochin compared to other Ports.
However we have to aspire for much better performance in the coming days. Then only we could gradually overcome the burden of about Rs. 2600 Crores deficit in the Pension Fund, repay the GoI loans of about Rs. 500 Crores, and meet the employee cost which is 50% of the total expenditure.We have to achieve higher productivity by optimum utilization of our resources. We have to equip ourselves to compete with the new ports coming up in the hinterland. Only by offering cost effective and reliable service we could attract more cargo to Cochin.
It is very important to control the operating expenditure to provide cost effective service and to achieve a healthy, sustainable and stable financial backup for the organization.
We are living in a world where changes are happening on a daily basis in every spheres of life. People and businesses who/which fail to quickly get adept to such situations would definitely get sidelined from the road to success. Hence, we need to re-engineer/redefine the work profiles to suit the demands of the new age logistics sector and strengthen the core areas of Port activities.Let us work hard to overcome challenges and join hands for attaining higher goals in the days to come.