Qatar’s maritime sector has remained strong, despite the continuing economic and trade embargo, as Hamad Port witnessed a robust 76% year-on-year growth in net tonnage to 2.53mn tonnes in September this year.The number of vessels calling on Hamad Port stood at 146, which, however saw an about 3% dip year-on-year, according to figures released by the Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics in its monthly statistics bulletin.
On a month-to-month basis, net tonnage through Hamad Port witnessed more than 7% growth driven by more than 7% increase in the vessels calling on the port. Hamad Port covers 28.5 sq km and will have the yearly capacity for 1.7mn tonnes of general freight and 1mn tonnes of grain, with a specialist terminal supporting the entry of around 500,000 vehicles per year. The first of the three container terminals is currently operational and has an optimum capacity of 2mn TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) per year, eventually increasing to more than 7.5mn.
The Haloul Port had seen an about 15% year-on-year expansion in net tonnage to 0.71mn tonnes in September. The number of vessels calling on the port was flat at seven on a yearly basis. The port had seen more than 6% and about 13% month-on-month decline respectively in net tonnage and the number of vessels calling on Haloul Port during September this year. The Mesaieed Port registered about 12% year-on-year growth in the number of vessels calling to 161; even as the net tonnage showed more than 5% decline to 2.09mn tonnes.
On a monthly basis, the port witnessed more than 3% growth in the number of vessels berthing but recorded about 13% decline in the net tonnage. On a yearly basis, Al Ruwais Port had seen a 10% decline in net tonnage to 37,000 tonnes in September and the number of vessels berthed saw about 17% shrinkage to 227 in the review period. The port had, however, witnessed about 3% growth each on a monthly basis in net tonnage and the number of vessels berthed during September.
Al-Ruwais Port, the second commercial port, plays the role of an additional access facility to promote the regional commercial shipments. Besides the usual handling of general cargoes, the port is now handling the increased demand for foodstuff and other commodities. It acts as gateway for fresh commodities from neighbouring countries. These also include frozen and chilled commodities arriving in reefer containers. Doha Port saw a net tonnage of 12,000 tonnes in September, registering 78% and 65% declines on yearly and monthly basis respectively. The number of vessels berthed stood at six in September, which showed 40% and 46% falls on yearly and monthly basis respectively.
Sources and photo-credits: Gulf Times