King Abdulaziz Port promotes diversification strategy - GulfToday

King Abdulaziz Port promotes diversification strategy


King Abdulaziz Port in the city of Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

Business Bureau, Gulf Today

King Abdulaziz Port, the largest Saudi port on the Arabian Gulf, marks its successful story which dates back to over four decades ago. The comprehensive port is pioneering major industrial and economic developments. It has expanded from a small berth capable of accommodating only two ships and connected to a 13-kilometre monorail off the coast of Dammam, to a huge complex of ports, shipyards and warehouses. It is also a base for an integrated infrastructure of factories and facilities for various maritime and marine activities, just one kilometre from the heart of Dammam.

Commenting on King Abdulaziz Port’s journey of growth and development, Eng. Walid F Al Faris, Director General of King Abdulaziz Port, said, “Operations at King Abdulaziz Port have started four decades ago mainly to serve the oil and gas industry, which flourishes in the Eastern Province. However, the Kingdom’s leadership had a vision to make it a comprehensive centre for the maritime industry, and this is exactly what has been achieved. The port has seen regular expansions and today, it covers approximately 190 square kilometres and is connected to the heart of Dammam, which is one kilometre away.

The port is the integrated commercial window that connects the Kingdom to the world and its location on the Arabian Gulf makes it ideal for exporting goods to neighbouring markets in Asia and the Indian Subcontinent. Additionally, the port’s central position on the Arabian Gulf coastline makes it a preferred destination for international shipping lines carrying goods to the Kingdom; the biggest market in the GCC.”

Talking about the integrated capabilities of King Abdulaziz Port, Al Faris explained, “King Abdulaziz Port can handle any type of cargo with its unique capabilities that are rarely found in a single port. It has four terminals operated by the best port management and operation companies. These include two container terminals; the first, operated by the International Port Services Company, has a capacity of 2.5 million containers TEU’s and a 16 metre deep with 10 berths totalling 2,160 metres in length. It is equipped with 17 bridge cranes, 5 of them are fully operated remotely.

The second terminal, operated by the Saudi Global Ports Company, and has a capacity of 1.5 million containers TEU’s, with two berths totalling 700 metres in length and a 16.5 metre deep. It is equipped with 6 bridge cranes and has an additional 600,000 square metre area.

The terminals are supported by a large number of mobile stackers and container cranes.” Al Faris added, “The port also has a general and bulk cargo terminal in the eastern part, operated by Globe Marine Services Company. It includes 9 berths totalling 1,740 metres in length and 12 to 14 metre deep. It features 56,000 square metre covered warehouses and 342,000 square metre open storage areas. The central cargo terminal, operated by United Technical Co., Ltd, includes 13 berths with length 2,465 meters, and 9 to 14 meter deep, 44,800 square metre covered warehouses, and 372,000 square metre open storage areas. Both terminals have a lot of cargo handling equipment.

Therefore, the port is an ideal destination for huge vessels that can dock on the port’s various deep berths. Waiting time for ships to unload is minimal thanks to the quality infrastructure, modern handling equipment and the ability to store bulk and general cargo in covered warehouses to protect them from weather and damage.”

In addition to the four main terminals, the port has a terminal with 33,600 square metre dimension for black cement and clinker export, and has a capacity storage silos around 30,000 tonne for black cement and a 40,000 tonnes for clinker. The terminal has a conveyor belt to directly transfer cement from the two silos to the ships. It can handle 800 tonnes of black cement and 700 tonnes of clinker per hour. Moreover, the port includes a 16,000 square meter white cement terminal and two storage silos with a capacity of 8,000 tonnes.

The port also has a 60,000 square metre terminal for handling iron ore, with a capacity of 3 million tonnes per year, and two gantry unloading equipment, each with a capacity of 800 tonnes per hour. The port also has a 113,000 square metre grain and fodder terminal with storage silos and warehouses with modern equipment capable of handling grains.

The port’s diversification strategy aims at enhancing its capabilities to deal with various types of cargo, including grains, oils, foodstuffs, ro-ro goods such as cars, vehicles, and other types of containers, is key to its competitiveness.

The port further promotes this position by providing services to ships such as fueling, food and other supply services. Ideal environment for import, export and docking Talking about the port’s import and export capabilities and supporting an alternative economy, Al Faris clarified, “King Abdulaziz Port has a state-of-the-art infrastructure that helps the Saudi industrial and commercial sectors do business easily. The port has a 351,000 square metre storage and re-export area, including 22 thermal-insulated warehouses, six of them are air-conditioned.

Related articles

Other Articles