Abu Dhabi Ports on Monday inaugurated the new Cosco Shipping Container Terminal at Khalifa with a capacity of 2.5 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units).
The new CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal, which includes the largest container freight station in the Middle East, is expected to boost Abu Dhabi’s position as a global maritime hub and support China’s One Belt One Road initiative.
CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal is the first international green-field subsidiary of Cosco Shipping Ports; water depth of the semi-automatic terminal is 16.5 metres which allow it to accommodate megavessels typically in excess of 20,000 TEU, said a stock exchange annoucement.
With an annual design capacity of 2.5 million TEU, the terminal will begin trial operations in April 2019 with 1.5 million TEU handling capacity, and will gradually ramping up the volume until the official operations scheduled to commence in the third quarter of 2019.
Total capex made by CSP in the terminal was US$300 million, which includes the largest Container Freight Station (CFS) in the Middle East covering 275,000 square meters. This state-of-the-art facility is the first of its kind in the region to be semi-automated with facilities for full and partial bonded container shipments, the full range of container packing services, short-term warehousing for de-consolidated cargo as well as easy connectivity with container terminals in Khalifa Port.
Ning Jizhe, Deputy Director of China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC)said: “The inauguration ceremony is not only a milestone in the cooperation of China’s 'Belt and Road Initiative', but also a good start for China and UAE’s pragmatic cooperation in other key areas. The two countries’ strong determination for cooperation laid a solid foundation for development and deepening of mutual relations, and thus provided promising prospects for cooperation in the future. Under the strategic leadership, China and UAE will continue to cooperate and jointly contribute to “Belt and Road Initiative”.”
He Jianzhong, Deputy Ministry of Ministry of Transport of China, said, “CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal is the latest major achievement from China and UAE’s joint efforts to implement 'the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road' in ports and shipping industry. CSP and Abu Dhabi Ports will continue to cooperate and increase capacity of Abu Dhabi Khalifa Port to make it a container gateway port and an important hub port in the Middle East in the near future, with an aim to better serve trade and economic development, as well as local community and people.”
The new terminal will also ease the way for companies seeking to establish, expand or enhance their trade by using local manufacturing, warehousing or logistics operations within Abu Dhabi and, through them, service regional, Middle Eastern, African and international markets.
In addition to attracting investors from Eastern Asia, it will increase Khalifa Port’s competitiveness and act as a catalyst for investment by foreign companies to set up in the free zone of Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (KIZAD), the region's largest industrial, manufacturing and logistics hub and free zone.