Sohar Port container volumes grow 11 per cent in Q2
Oman’s Sohar Port has released new figures showing a solid second quarter this year. Despite ongoing issues in the maritime industry and the continued lull in global oil prices, container volumes in Q2 2017 grew by 11 per cent compared with the same quarter last year, as the port emerges as one of the region’s prime logistical hubs.
Dry bulk up, rest down slightly
Dry bulk cargo also grew significantly at Sohar Port in the first half of 2017, up by 24 per cent in comparison to the first six months of last year.
Liquid bulk, general and project cargo figures were down slightly compared to those of the last year.
The port, however, has exceeded one million tonnes of sea cargo each week, a significant threshold that the Omani logistical hub crossed at the end of 2016 for the first time, it said in a statement sent out to the media.
Container throughput at the Hutchison-managed terminal has grown threefold over the past five years, which the port officials said was “in line with significant investments to increase efficiency to the highest international standards.”
The country has been making several investments as part of its Logistics Strategy 2040, which is aimed at positioning the Sultanate as a leading hub for regional trade.
To this end, Sohar Port opened a new container terminal at the end of last year.
The new Terminal C features remote-controlled quayside cranes equipped to handle 20,000 TEU ships. It also has an automated appointment system to reduce truck waiting times and increase turnaround speed.
The port has also installed auto-gates that cut paperwork and delays for drivers entering and leaving the new terminal facilities. Significant government investment and efforts are also underway to connect Sohar to the UAE, Saudi Arabia and elsewhere.
“Sohar is playing an important role in the diversification of Oman’s economy as we start to take full advantage of our prime strategic location in the region, outside the Strait of Hormuz but close to the main consumer markets of Iran and the Gulf States. We remain fully committed to building a modern and sustainable logistics infrastructure that will support Oman in achieving all our Vision 2020 objectives,” said Mark Geilenkirchen, CEO of Sohar Port.