JEDDAH: The world’s most efficient port is emerging as a safe haven to ward off global logistical pressures as global supply chain companies find ways to deal with worsening maritime congestion.
King Abdullah Port recently reached a milestone of 15 million twenty feet in a record time of less than nine years since the start of container terminal operations. The performance follows a 31 percent increase in container throughput in 2021.
“We attribute this to our advanced infrastructure, facilities built to global standards, and our highly efficient PPP business model,” KAP CEO Jay New said in an exclusive interview with Arab News. .
Founded in 2010, Cape Port is the first privately owned and operated port in the Middle East and is the flagship project of the Port Development Company.
PTC is a joint venture between Emaar Economic City and Huta Marine Works Limited – two of the largest infrastructure developers in the Middle East.
“The decision to introduce this PDC concept was not easy as it was difficult to convince stakeholders, many of whom were unfamiliar with this business model. “The process of growing and working at the same time is equally difficult,” New said.
According to a report by the World Bank and S&P Global Market Intelligence, KAP is first among the world’s 443 most efficient container ports in the 2021 Container Port Performance Index.
King Abdullah Port is just 15 minutes from the marina, providing easy and quick access to the docks. This, together with our exceptional crane density, has enabled us to be one of the fastest growing and most efficient ports with significant growth in volumes, ”said the CEO.
The port has achieved this feat despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on shipping in 2021, including global supply chain disruption, high freight rates and volatile trading patterns.
“At King Abdullah Port, we are proud to have helped revive the logistics and maritime trading industry through the pandemic and post-pandemic global supply chain disruptions,” New said.
The CEO attributed the success of these efforts to the improved operational readiness of the port’s terminals and stations, which were equipped to receive a wide range of food, medicine and medical equipment during the outbreak of the epidemic.
At King Abdullah Port, we are proud of the work we have done to revive the logistics and maritime trade sector through global supply chain disruptions during pandemic and post-pandemic periods.
Jay NuutKing Abdullah Port CEO
In 2020, the port achieved an import growth rate of 16 percent, with imports of pharmaceutical and medical supplies increasing by 72 percent.
“During this period, we devised and applied innovative ways to work around the clock without interruption,” he added.
Partnership with Maersk
In June 2021, KAP entered into a partnership with Maersk, a global logistics and supply chain provider, to launch an integrated Maersk Logistics Center within the port.
The move aims to meet the critical logistical needs of exporters who already have access to Maersk solutions such as road freight traffic, customs clearance and maritime logistics.
The center serves as a crucial supply chain solution for the Kingdom’s petrochemical exporters, facilitating export cargo warehouses and enabling pallet handling, filler and shuttle services.
The CEO said: “The establishment of this center is part of a major initiative aimed at increasing the efficiency and competitiveness of the logistics sector in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
Neo believes that automation and digitization are critical to a thriving port industry.
We believe that new investments should focus on harnessing the potential of new technologies to improve service delivery and efficiency. We continue to develop our practices and operational capabilities through digital transformation. ”
The port’s personal communications service, developed by IBM, features an integrated single-window port, document exchange services, real-time visibility, alert notification and advanced analytics, giving users easy access to critical information about ships and cargo.
The smart gate system integrates with the PCS system to create a more efficient interface between gate operations and government agencies such as Zakat, tax, customs and border guards.
“This extensive automation has significantly improved operational efficiency and turnaround times,” he said.
global supply chain designs
The kingdom’s ports today generally handle 20 percent of the region’s transhipment market, but officials aim to increase that percentage to 50 percent by 2030.
With the establishment of four new special economic zones in the Kingdom, the national ports will benefit from a boom in foreign direct investment, commercial activities and trade flows in logistics, manufacturing, financial services, technology, etc.
New believes that KAP occupies a competitive position in the industry due to several factors such as its location on the Red Sea, a major east-west trade route that accounts for 13 percent of total world trade.
The port is part of King Abdullah Economic City, which gives the port another strategic advantage.
“Our proximity to the Industrial Valley, which is part of King Abdullah Economic City, enables companies to have a base close to the port and provides direct access to extensive external transportation facilities, including the ultra-modern highway network and the new Haramain. high speed. train, ”he said.
The city recently welcomed Lucid’s first electric vehicle plant outside the United States, which will produce 150,000 electric vehicles annually.
KAP provides access to the upcoming Saudi agricultural bridge project, which will connect Riyadh, Dammam and other GCC countries directly.
The project will connect the western and eastern parts of the kingdom and could cost about 100 billion Saudi Riyal ($ 26 billion) once all factors are taken into account.
Transport and Logistics Minister Saleh Al-Jasser said the contracts would be signed within a year and that the project would take five to seven years to be implemented.
KAP launched a new international transit freight service last May, supported by the local movement between Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, reducing the time from 13-16 days by sea to four to six days per country .
The move simplified the process from the arrival of goods at the port to shipment to the final destination by three hours, which will also reduce storage costs, according to a statement from KAP.
“With the latest processing facilities, one of the deepest waters in the world and a fully integrated personal communications service, KAP is well on its way to achieving its goal of being one of the best ports in the world,” Niu said. .