Hutchison Ports Holdings (HPH) has taken steps to further strengthen its position in the Middle East region. The company has signed an agreement with the Royal Commission in Jubail and Yanbu, represented by the Jubail and Yanbu Industrial Services Company, for the Hong Kong-based global terminal operator to invest and operate JCPDI Port. This will incorporate a number of different cargo handling facilities within the Jazan City for Primary and Downstream Industries (JCPDI) on the Red Sea coast.
To be developed over two phases, the new port will consist of a container terminal and a general cargo and dry bulk terminal. Each will be equipped with high performance handling equipment and which have a quayside draft of 16.5 m. Commercial operations of Phase I will launch this year, starting with the general cargo and dry bulk terminal. With a berth length of 540 m, this facility will serve the immediate needs of the growing list of JCPDI tenants. Subsequently, Phase I of the container terminal is expected to start commercial operations in early 2022 and will offer 730 m of berth.
In another recently announced development, HPH subsidiary Hutchison Ports Sohar is to work with the Ports of Sohar on a joint feasibility study into the possible expansion of the Omani port and the addition of a new container terminal capable of receiving mega-vessels. The feasibility study will commence this year and will assess the social, environmental, logistical and economic impacts of any future expansion.
Sohar Port is currently witnessing growing occupancy rates and it has decided that there is a need to increase capacity, to enable it to keep pace with future developments. The addition of any new areas will be designed to increase the attractiveness of the port and comprise the necessary infrastructure to attract major international shipping lines.