Tuesday, November 29, 2016

New 'Mega Port' Designed to be Middle Eastern Container Freight and Logistics Hub

Multi Billion Dollar Facility Opens This Week
Shipping News Feature

QATAR – The Qatari Minister of Transport and Communications, Jassim Saif Ahmed Al Sulaiti, who is also Chairman of the Qatar Ports Management Company (Mwani Qatar), and Sheikh Ali bin Jassim bin Mohammad Al-Thani, Chairman of Qatar Navigation (Milaha), today witnessed the signing of an agreement between Mwani Qatar and Milaha to establish a new company, QTerminals, to manage the newly constructed Hamad Port. The port, which is scheduled to become fully operational this week, is a $7.4 billion megaproject that the Qatari government expect will boost their logistics industry hugely and make Qatar a key regional hub by 2030.

As per the agreement, the new company will be co-owned by Mwani Qatar; 51%, and Milaha; 49%, and will manage operations at Hamad Port as an independent company with its own board of directors, executives and staff. The intention is to transfer all existing trade currently passing through the Port of Doha to the new deep water port with the first vessel due to dock any day. Export operations from Doha have already ceased with Hamad accepting such cargo as from this week. Commenting on the occasion, Minister Al Sulaiti said:

“This strategic partnership reaps the benefits of several years of strong collaboration and ties between Mwani Qatar and Milaha, which have brought about this common plan for managing Hamad Port, one of the country’s vital megaprojects and which will serve as Qatar’s gateway to world trade.”

Hamad Port represents a significant addition to Qatar’s maritime infrastructure and will boast a handling capacity of 7 million containers per year after completion. It will also be connected to Gulf Cooperation Council countries through a road and rail network.

The port will also include a new naval base, a huge industrial park, customs inspection facilities for rapid cargo clearance, a uniquely designed port Control Tower with a height of 110 metres, a ship inspection platform and multiple maritime facilities, in addition to the other utilities required for modern port operations.