Qatar’s multiple growth engines appear to have ignited as the general cargo and container movement as well as handling of building materials through Hamad, Doha and Al Ruwais ports witnessed robust expansion year-on-year this September, according to Mwani Qatar data.
On a monthly basis, there was an across-the-board growth in general cargo, RORO (automobiles), containers and building materials, indicating the rebound of business activities after the authorities relaxed Covid-19 restrictions.
The general cargo handled through the three ports stood at 97,750 tonnes in September 2020, which Mwani Qatar estimates as a 131% jump on yearly basis. It almost doubled month-on-month in the review period.
The cumulative general cargo movement through the three ports reached more than a million tonne during January-September 2020.
For the Hamad Port, which is the largest eco-friendly project in the region and internationally recognized as one of the largest green ports in the world, all 12 mobile cranes have successfully completed commissioning and now been fully handed over for deployment in the second container terminal or CT2.
The initial operation of the CT2 is expected to begin in December, after which the capacity of the Hamad Port will reach 3mn TEUs per year.
The container handling through the three ports stood at 120,282 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units), which grew 8.9% and 5.7% year-on-year and month-on-month respectively in September 2020. The container movement totalled more than 1.03mn TEUs during January-September this year.
The number of ships calling on these ports stood at 324 in September this year, which was more than 23% higher compared to August 2020; but witnessed a 12.65% decline on a yearly basis.
"Mwani Qatar is committed to promoting Qatar’s maritime sector role and encouraging sustainable shipping practices as well as protecting the marine environment," it said recently on the World Maritime Day.
As many as 2,372 ships had called on these three ports during the first nine months of this year.
The Hamad Port’s strategic geographical location offers opportunities to create cargo movement towards the upper Gulf, supporting countries such as Kuwait and Iraq, and south towards Oman.
The three ports together handled 5,373 vehicles (RORO) in September 2020, which grew 31% month-on-month but fell 38.47% year-on-year. A total of 45,712 units have moved through these ports during January-September 2020.
The building materials handled amounted to 36,336 tonnes in September this year, which shot up 21.48% and 30.32% on yearly and monthly basis respectively. A total of 236, 600 tonnes of building materials had been handled by these three ports during the first nine months of this year.
The three ports had handled 5.353 livestock in September, which was down about 8% year-on-year.
Besides the usual handling of general cargoes, the Al Ruwais port, Qatar's northern gateway to trade, now handles increased demand of foodstuff and other commodities. It also provides a ready solution by acting as gateway for fresh commodities from neighbouring countries.