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Fri 18 Dec 2015 01:00 AM

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Abu Dhabi prepares for next phase of port expansion

Abu Dhabi Terminals reveals 2016-17 plan as it forecasts 10% growth in volumes next year

Abu Dhabi prepares for next phase of port expansion
A picture shows Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi. (AFP/Getty Images)

Port operator Abu Dhabi Terminals has announced that Khalifa Port Container Terminal is ready for the next phase of expansion and that new equipment will be added in 2016 and 2017 to keep up with demand for services.

Abu Dhabi's main container port is currently on 78 percent of its handling capacity and the next two years will see Abu Dhabi Terminals enhancing its operational readiness through infrastructural development to meet the expected growth of the local and regional industry.

The company said in a statement that a total of 1.48 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) containers have been handled at Khalifa Port Container Terminal in 2015, up from 1.14 million in 2014.

It is anticipated that 2016 will see growth of 10 percent with the port operator handling 1.62 million TEU containers.

By 2020, the first phase of Khalifa Port Container Terminal will be at maximum capacity - 2.5 million TEU containers - and subsequently the second part of the port island will be commissioned, taking the capacity to 5 million TEUs annually.

Martijn van de Linde, Abu Dhabi Terminals' CEO, said: "Khalifa Port Container Terminal is now firmly on the world map as a key logistics hub which has been achieved through becoming an industry partner for our customers, as well as demonstrating that Khalifa Port offers a cost-effective, fast and reliable alternative to regional ports.

"We have also significantly developed our network, going from an initial five to a current 50 international destinations."

He added: "Through collaboration and diversification of our services, Abu Dhabi Terminals maintains its mission to innovate constantly, and continue our growth momentum through to 2020 when the next phase of the port island will be handed over."

In three years of operation, traffic through Khalifa Port Container Terminal has grown at the fastest pace of any container terminal in the Middle East, experiencing double-digit yearly growth and doubling the volume of containers handled.

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