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Salalah volume surges 29pc in first half to 1.58 million TEU

CONTAINER throughput at the Port of Salalah, part of the APM Terminals' portfolio, reached 1.58 million TEU in the first half of 2016, representing a 29 per cent increase year on year.

Salalah volume surges 29pc in first half to 1.58 million TEU
16 September 2016 - 19:32
Salalah volume surges 29pc in first half to 1.58 million TEU
CONTAINER throughput at the Port of Salalah, part of the APM Terminals' portfolio, reached 1.58 million TEU in the first half of 2016, representing a 29 per cent increase year on year.
The completion of a new deep water general cargo and liquid bulk terminals in December 2015 has enabled significant growth, with the facility handling one million tonnes monthly, reports New York's Marine Link. 
Container growth come from being near the sea, and an ability to handle the biggest container ships in the Asia-Europe trad. Ninety per cent of its box trade is transshipment.
"The largest vessels regularly calling Salalah are about 16,000 TEU capacity vessels which are normally deployed in the Asia/Europe trade lane, for which port calls are decided based upon the sustained ability to handle ULCS performance levels," said Salalah port CEO David Gledhill.
The biggest ship to call at Salalah is the 19,224-TEU MSC Zoe, the biggest containership afloat.
"We are seeing a trend of deployment of these large vessels on major trade lanes and we expect to see more of these calls in the near future," said Mr Gledhill. 
Some 30 container liner services call Salalah on a monthly basis, linking the Arabian Sea facility to all major ports in Europe, the Mediterranean, the US east coast, East Africa, the Indian subcontinent, the Red Sea and the Arabian Gulf.
"With the shipping industry witnessing significant changes in terms of structure and alliances, we have seen enhanced connectivity to East Africa, Somalia and North Oman in 2016. 
"We are actively engaged in discussions with the shipping lines who want to leverage the location of Salalah to increase penetration into regional markets like Yemen, countries around the Red Sea and Iran," said Mr Gledhill.
The general cargo facility currently handles 200,000 tonnes of limestone and 550,000 tonnes of gypsum monthly, among other cargoes. 
The new berths are used for discharging grain, loading bagged cement, berthing of the multi-national navies engaged in anti-piracy operation, and for cruise vessels.
Salalah, on the Arabian Sea, is one of the largest container ports in the Middle East with a 2015 volume of 2.56 million TEU. The facility also handled 7.9 million tons of bulk cargo in 2015.
"We act as the container relay hub for East Africa, the Red Sea, Arabian Gulf and the Indian subcontinent. Bulk cargo, limestone and gypsum are predominantly destined for the Indian subcontinent. Cement is exported to the Red Sea and East Africa, Wheat is imported from Australia and liquid exports are predominantly to Europe and Asia," Mr Gledhill said.
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