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Sun 31 Jan 2010 11:12 AM

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DP World officially launches Vietnamese port

Port should allow DP World to tap into both the intra-Asia market and deep sea trades.

Dubai ports giant DP World has officially launched its Saigon Premier Container Terminal (SPCT), in the Vietnamese capital, Ho Chi Minh City.

The port was completed in just two years, and takes up a 23-hectare block in the Hiep Phuoc Industrial Park

Phase one of the development has 2 berths and storage capacity for up to 15,000 TEU (twenty foot equivalent container units) at a time, including 650 refrigerated container slots.

Ongoing development at the site will see the Saoi Rap river dredged to a depth of 9.5m, allowing SPCT to serve vessels carrying up to 5,000 TEU.

Further dredging should allow the port to handle 8000 TEU vessels in the near future, reducing costs for Vietnamese exporters and importers.

At the moment, five shipping lines offer multiple weekly calls at SPCT, which began operations in October last year.

The infrastructural work at the terminal should allow DP World to tap into both the intra-Asia market and deep sea trades.

“We congratulate the Vietnamese Government and the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City on their vision, and thank them sincerely for their commitment to building the infrastructure upon which the new industrial zone depends – notably roads, bridges, and especially the waterway access via a deepened Soai Rap River,” said DP World chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem.

“I have visited Vietnam on many occasions and have been deeply impressed with the vibrancy and energy of this great country, and of Ho Chi Minh City in particular.  It therefore comes as no surprise to me that HCMC achieved growth in container traffic of 2 percent during last year’s unprecedented recession in World shipping.  

The SPCT is a one of a number of sites in Asia that DP World is developing. Others include Qingdao, in China, India’s Kulpi and Vallarpadam, and Pakistan’s Karachi.  

Last week, DP World announced that
container volumes were down 8 percent in 2009 in comparison to the year earlier

, as a result of "challenging" conditions facing the global shipping industry.

The firm also announced that the global shipping industry as a whole had reported a decline of almost 12 percent in container volumes.

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