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Port of Duqm says it’s ready to help ships stuck near Suez

30 Mar 2021

Oman’s Port of Duqm is ready to help container and cargo ships stuck on the Red Sea side of the Suez Canal due to the grounding of megaship MV Ever Given, according to Port of Duqm Company (PDC).

PDC, on its official Twitter handle, said ‘Port of Duqm is ready to mitigate the challenging situation being faced by the shipping operators who have their ships stuck on the Red Sea side of the Suez Canal, due to the grounding of the Evergreen vessel in the key transitway connecting the East and West trade route.’

The MV Ever Given was refloated and shipping traffic in the Suez Canal resumed on Monday evening, sparking relief almost a week after the huge container ship got stuck during a sandstorm and blocked a major artery for global trade.

The Suez Canal Authority cautioned, however, that it will take more than three days to clear the traffic jams of ships that were stuck at the northern and southern ends of the canal.

PDC said Port of Duqm is ready to provide storage options, transhipment and bunkering solutions for containers, RORO units and any vessel types looking for a new safe haven in the Middle East.

‘These ships [stuck on the Red Sea side of Suez], mostly carrying shipments bound for Europe, North Africa and US east coast, can explore the options of offloading their containers or their cargo at the Port of Duqm for temporary storage and later on, through the deployment of specific relief ships of varying sizes, decide to clear these backlogs for final delivery to the destination points,’ PDC said.

By doing so, PDC said, the major take away for the shipping operators would be a lesser disturbance to the service rotation of the round voyage so that ships on the East-West long-haul services can get back to their proforma schedule as quickly as possible.

With the excellent nautical access and marine services including bunkering, five terminals (multipurpose, RORO, container, navy and dry-bulk), a dry-dock capability within the port, the Port of Duqm is a deep draft port of 18m which can handle megaships upto 20,000 TEU capacity, PDC noted. ‘Today, the port is equipped with enough handling equipment such as harbour cranes, reach stackers etc. to operate independently 24/7.’

Strategically located at the mouth of the Arabian Sea lying closer to the major East-West shipping trade lanes, the Port of Duqm is well-linked to other major seaports in the region such as Jebel Ali in the UAE, via a multipurpose weekly feeder service of Oman Shipping Company.

The container berth at the Port of Duqm measuring approximately 1200m, out of a total quay length of 2,200m, has a storage yard capacity designed to hold over 1.2mn TEUs, PDC explained.

On Tuesday, Port of Duqm Company announced that all its operations are now moved to Duqm and will be run from its main headquarters in Duqm, starting from April 4, 2021.


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