Achieves significant milestones throughout a challenging year
In facing the extraordinary challenge of a once in a generation pandemic, Abu Dhabi Ports has weathered 2020 particularly well, continuing to grow and expand its overall capacity and capabilities and emerge stronger than ever before.
With the advent of COVID-19, the company successfully raised its profile worldwide as a responsible player in the trade and logistics sector with the Horns of Hope campaign.
This innovative initiative reached more than 260 million people in over 23 countries.
In tandem, Abu Dhabi Ports’ comprehensive business continuity strategy was implemented ensuring the smooth flow of goods and medical provisions supplied into Abu Dhabi continued as normal for the duration of the crisis.
By the close of the year, as the COVID-19 vaccine became available, Abu Dhabi Ports joined the Hope Consortium, the Abu Dhabi government-led effort to realise full global vaccine distribution.
Abu Dhabi Ports is committed to utilising storage and distribution resources at its logistics facilities at the Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (KIZAD) toward the immunisation efforts of billions of people in the region and beyond.
Falah Mohammad Al Ahbabi, Chairman, Abu Dhabi Ports, said: "Abu Dhabi Ports contribution to addressing humanity’s greatest challenge in a generation is testament to the high esteem our organisation and assets are held both within Abu Dhabi and the UAE and around the world.
"In less than 12 months, Abu Dhabi Ports’ pandemic response and overall contribution to trade and logistics is accelerating its transformational journey from a domestic champion to a globally recognised player.
Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Group CEO of Abu Dhabi Ports, said: "We are proud of Abu Dhabi Port’s wonderful achievements over the course of 2020.
"Despite the most difficult business environment, our broad portfolio has remained resilient and has continued to grow, keeping trade moving, building new facilities and infrastructure, and launching new services.
Despite the unprecedented challenges that arose over the course of 2020, Khalifa Port, Abu Dhabi Ports’ flagship deep-water facility which today serves more than 25 shipping lines and offers links to over 70 international destinations.
Khalifa Port has managed to surpass expectations by achieving a series of magnificent milestones, such as progressing the ongoing South Quay and Khalifa Port Logistics (KPL) developments ahead of schedule.
Khalifa Port’s advanced RoRo terminal, Autoterminal Khalifa Port, unveiled an all-new technical centre aimed at diversifying the portfolio of services on offer for our automotive customers.
One big player to invest in Khalifa Port’s ecosystem is Saudi-based Arabian Chemical Terminals (ACT), who signed a 50-year lease earlier this year. They will take advantage of a plot next to the 16-metre-deep quayside at KPL for a commercial bulk liquid and gas storage tank farm.
As part of its efforts to serve and facilitate the growing global trade demands within the Gulf region, and to support mainliner shipping clients, Abu Dhabi Ports also announced the establishment of a new feeder services company called "SAFEEN Feeders".
Expansion of services was also a key focus area for Khalifa Port’s terminals this year. CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal, the first overseas greenfield project of COSCO SHIPPING Ports announced the start of a direct, weekly service to several ports across Europe and the Indian Subcontinent.
Similarly, Abu Dhabi Terminals welcomed another mainline service to its growing network, providing additional direct coverage and fast transit times from the Mediterranean and the Red Sea into Abu Dhabi, and from Abu Dhabi into Southeast Asia and North Asia.
Closing the year on a high, the unveiling of the 2020 edition of Lloyd’s List Top 100 Container Ports revealed that Khalifa Port had advanced a total of 24 spots on the annual ranking and was crowned the fastest growing port in the world.
At the start of December the completion of the second phase of development at Delma Port was announced including the creation of a 315-metre quay wall.
The formation of Abu Dhabi Maritime in July as the primary custodian of all waterways and marine ecosystems in Abu Dhabi, is expected to bring growth to the sector.
The same month, following a decree by Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the Higher Corporation for Specialized Economic Zones or ZonesCorp joined Abu Dhabi Ports, ensuring that Abu Dhabi Port’s industrial and economic zones offering expanded to 555 square kilometres and more than 1,400 customers.
ZonesCorp brought over 900 manufacturing and commercial facilities, many of which are already utilised by some of the world’s leading industrial players.
In September, in another step in its drive to enhance the emirate’s rank as an international hub for trade and logistics, Abu Dhabi Ports announced the acquisition of MICCO Logistics.
In May, H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office, inaugurated the Single Window of Logistics & Trade in Abu Dhabi during a visit to KIZAD.
Developed and operated by Abu Dhabi Ports’ Maqta Gateway aims to facilitate trade through sea, land, air, industrial and free zones, in addition to enhancing customer and stakeholder experience within the trade and logistics sectors.
Sheikh Khalid’s visit to the region’s largest industrial zone also included a detailed briefing on the ongoing projects in various phases of development at KIZAD and inspection of Abu Dhabi Ports Logistics’ Cold Storage Warehouse, one of the largest facilities of its type constructed in Abu Dhabi.
With respect to KIZAD, the industrial zone began 2020 with an agreement with Shrinath Flexipack Pvt Ltd, India’s leading manufacturer of plastic packaging materials, to build its first factory in the Middle East within its Polymers Park.
Over the course of the year, KIZAD broke ground on several new developments including the Middle East region’s largest truck plaza, which is roughly equal in size to 12 soccer fields.
In June, KIZAD announced the start of developing new warehouse products to meet the rising demand for pre-built facilities. A range of small-to-medium light-industrial warehousing units comprising the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh phases of the KIZAD Logistics Park were introduced throughout 2020.
The tour de force for Abu Dhabi Ports’ Industrial Cities and Free Zone portfolio for 2020 came in the form of an agreement between Abu Dhabi Ports and the Manufacturers Association of Israel (MAI) to enhance trade, investment, and technology cooperation between the two Middle East countries.
Opening a dialogue between Abu Dhabi Ports’ subsidiaries KIZAD and ZonesCorp with MAI, the agreement will see increased collaboration in areas of research and development, industrial cooperation, and transfer of knowledge.
Two developments stood out for SAFEEN, Abu Dhabi Ports’ maritime service arm, in 2020.
In April, it announced the successful acquisition of "HAFEET", a Post Panamax bulk carrier, making it the largest vessel ever to join its inventory after it first completes an extensive conversion, prior to commencing operations.
SAFEEN also joined forces with Robert Allan Ltd. to develop the world’s first fully unmanned, autonomous commercial marine tugs.