Hutchison Ports has officially begun terminal operations at Saqr Port in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK), located in the northern United Arab Emirates (UAE), under a new 25-year concession agreement.
The four-berth terminal, named Hutchison Ports RAK, is located 25 kilometres from the RAK city centre, has a 350,000-TEU capacity, an 800-metre-long quay and a depth alongside of 12 metres, in addition to a 20-hectare yard.
It also has connections to the RAK Maritime City Free Zone and the industrial zones of Al Hamra and Al Ghail.
Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, a Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, and Eric Ip, Hutchison Ports Group Managing Director, have expressed belief in the port’s ability to support local trade and economic development.
In its announcement about the agreement, Hutchison Ports said that RAK’s shippers would benefit from the region’s central location on the East-West trade lanes.
Hutchison Ports, which runs 33 ports along the Belt and Road trade route, forecasted that the region may receive a boost in traffic from recovering global trade and from China’s initiative.
The operator said that it would ensure direct access for RAK shippers as the initiative develops.
It did not share the financial details of the deal.
Learn why Pakistan is in a prime location on the East-West trade routes by reading the 'Pakistan’s High-tech Port of Call' technical paper by Captain Syed Rashid Jamil, Chief Executive Officer, Hutchison Ports Pakistan
Sheikh Saud said: “One of our objectives in Ras Al Khaimah is to create a business infrastructure that will attract investors and entrepreneurs from around the world.
“Hutchison Ports RAK and its plans for future development of the Saqr Port facilities are a key piece in our logistics puzzle which will encourage those with interest to make the commitment to Ras Al Khaimah.
“This partnership is one more indicator that Ras Al Khaimah is committed to offering the infrastructure, services and skilled workforce that allows commerce and industry to thrive in the Emirate.”
Ip said: “We are excited to have the opportunity to invest in and operate a container terminal facility that is situated in a gateway location and is home to world’s largest ceramics manufacturer.
“RAK has a strong export base, with many fine shippers of ceramics, pharmaceuticals, glass, cement, crushed rock and other products.
“These companies can now take advantage of a less congested and more sustainable multimodal shipping route to Jebel Ali and beyond.
“Meanwhile, by frequenting Hutchison Ports RAK, local truckers will have a shorter delivery route that allows them to make more trips every day.”