Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 22 October 2019

Abu Dhabi Ports records 82.4% jump in first-half container volumes

Growth partly driven by agreements signed with Mediterranean Shipping Company and Cosco Shipping Ports

Khalifa Port cements its position as a global maritime hub with arrival of two 20,000-plus TEU China COSCO SHIPPING mega-vessels at CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal. Courtesy of Abu Dhabi Ports.
Khalifa Port cements its position as a global maritime hub with arrival of two 20,000-plus TEU China COSCO SHIPPING mega-vessels at CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal. Courtesy of Abu Dhabi Ports.

Abu Dhabi Ports' shipping container volumes surged 82.4 per cent in the first half of 2019, despite a "challenging" global trade environment as deals signed with international companies in 2018 boosted business.

Khalifa Port handled 1.1 million Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit (TEUs) containers in the first six months of the year, up from 620,974 TEU in the prior-year period, Abu Dhabi Ports said in a statement on Sunday. The growth was mainly fuelled by concession agreements signed last year with maritime firms such as Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) and Cosco Shipping Ports (CSP).

"Despite a challenging international environment for the trade and logistics sectors in recent years, our industry continues to grow," Mohammad Al Ahbabi, chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, said. “Our strategy to collaborate with some of the world’s top industry players is proving to be a huge success."

The emirate's tie-ups with major players such as Cosco is part of Abu Dhabi’s strategy to boost its trade sector and contribute to the growth of its non-oil economy as it looks to diversify from oil.

Abu Dhabi Ports said total cargo handled across its ports - which include Fujairah Terminals, Zayed Port and Mussafah Port - rose 10 per cent year-on-year to just under 9.7 million tonnes in the first half of 2019.

Abu Dhabi Ports recorded a slight drop in Roll-on Roll-off (RORO) figures, from 78,163 units in the first half of 2018 to 73,590 unit this year, which it attributed to a drop in new car sales.

Abu Dhabi Ports also posted a 35 per cent increase in cruise passengers in the first half of the year to 321,277 passengers.

This was reflected in the number of cruise vessels calling at either Zayed Port, Fujairah Terminals or Sir Bani Yas Cruise Terminal, with total calls increasing to 129, from 93 in the same period last year. Cruise passenger numbers at Fujairah Port almost tripled to 14,441, up from 5,931 last year.

The higher cruise passenger numbers were attributed to investments made in three cruise terminals and partnership with organisations such as Etihad Airways.

Updated: September 23, 2019 03:45 AM

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