Ports operator DP World  on Sunday said that the expansion of Jebel Ali Port’s Terminal 2, which includes the brand new $850 million Terminal 3, has passed the halfway mark.
Welcoming the move, DP World’s Chairman Sultan Ahmad Bin Sulayem, said in a statement, it was crucial in supporting the growth of Dubai and the wider Middle Eas t, Africa and Subcontinent region, and that the new capacity will support Dubai’s growth far into the future.
His comments came as he inspected the construction underway at Jebel Ali’s Container Terminals 2 and 3, accompanied by Mohammad Ali Ahmad, Chief Operations Officer, DP World UAE Region.
The two terminals are set to take the total capacity at the port to 19 million TEU (twenty foot equivalent container units) by 2014, DP World said in a statement, adding that the expansion of Terminal 2, which will add 1 million TEU capacity, is on schedule to open in the first half of 2013, with 60 per cent of construction work completed.
Meanwhile, work has also begun on the new 4 million TEU capacity Terminal 3, set to open in 2014, the company said.
“We are building to ensure that Dubai and Jebel Ali Port continue to efficiently meet the needs of the shipping lines and traders serving the wider region of two billion people. Increasingly, the lines are seeking economies of scale with new generation mega-ships, and we stand ready to handle these giants of the sea, reinforcing Dubai’s role as the centre of trade in the region,” Bin Sulayem said in a statement.
According to DP World, the new T3 will be “one of the finest modern” marine terminals in the world, with a quay length of 1,860 metres, a 70 hectare storage yard, and a draft of 17 metres. Whereas, the T2 expansion extends the quay wall 400 metres to 3,000 metres, allowing the simultaneous handling of six 15,000 TEU mega ships.
These developments will eventually translate into Jebel Ali being able to handle 10 of the next generation 18,000 TEU mega vessels at the same time, making it the only port in the region able to do so, the company said.
In the first six months of 2012 DP World, UAE Region , handled in Jebel Ali 6.6 million TEU, 7.3 per cent more than in the same period last year.