RIYADH: The Saudi Ports Authority (Mawani) announced on Thursday that all areas of its activities had seen growth during the first half of 2021.
The announcement reflects the Kingdom’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In terms of containers, Mawani handled 3.6 million TEU (a measure of volume equivalent to a 20-foot cargo container) during the first half of the year — a jump of 5.18 percent year-on-year. Transshipment containers increased by 24.49 percent to 1.4 million TEU, while it handled a total of 138 million tons of cargo.
The number of passengers grew by 0.61 percent year-on-year to 288,000, and Mawani handled 429,000 imported cars.
The authority also recorded an increase in the number of ships received at the Kingdom’s ports, which received 6,037 vessels — an increase of 6.6 percent over the same period last year.
Mawani launched four shipping lines in 2020 to help increase Saudi ports’ connectivity with their international counterparts.
In July, the authority announced investment opportunities in partnership with the private sector to develop and operate multipurpose terminals in eight of the nation’s ports, in line with the objectives of Saudi Vision 2030, which include making the Kingdom a leading global logistics platform and connecting hub.
The build-operate-transfer (BOT) contracts on offer are for terminals in Jeddah Islamic Port, King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam, Ras Al-Khair Port, Jizan Port, Yanbu Commercial Port, King Fahad Industrial Port in Jubail, King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu, and Jubail Commercial Port.
One of the goals of Saudi Vision 2030 is for transport and logistics to contribute 10 percent of the country’s GDP by that date, up from its current 6 percent, following the implementation of the Kingdom’s new strategy for the sector.