Gwadar Port to be functional in next five months
Photo credit: http://www.chinapage.com
Gwadar Port, located on the shores of the Arabian Sea in the western province of Balochistan and developed with huge Chinese investment, will be made fully functional in the next five month’s time, Pakistan’s Minister for Ports and Shipping Senator Kamran Michael has said.
Gwadar Port, which is about 533 km from Karachi and 120 km from Iranian border, is located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, just outside the Straits of Hormuz, near the key shipping routes in and out of the Persian Gulf.
The Minister made the important announcement about Gwadar Port at the inaugural session of the 3rd International Conference and Exhibition on Shipping, Logistics and Supply Chain Management 2013, organised by the Publicity Channel in collaboration with Ministry of Ports & Shipping, Pakistan International Freight Forwarding Association, Pakistan Shipping Agents Association and Air Cargo Agents Association at Karachi.
Senator Kamran Michael said: “Almost 60 per cent of development work, with specific reference to road infrastructure, has been completed at the site. This port will connect Gulf region and the Middle-East to Southeast Asia and is equally vital for national growth and in securing economy of Pakistan.”
Currently, Pakistan has two main operating international deep-sea ports: Karachi Port and Port Qasim. EXIM experts in the country felt that during the coming years, their capacity expansion programmes are unlikely to keep pace with the expected growth in demand, resulting in a need for a third port to fill the gap.
While Karachi Port has significant physical limitations and will not be able to grow since it is within the city of Karachi itself (something like Chennai Port in Tamil Nadu), Port Qasim, though having a large physical space for expansion, development here is hampered by its up-stream location, which is more than 40 km from the open sea, resulting in long turnaround times for visiting ships.
The Minister on the occasion also announced that the ship breaking industry is being moved to Port Qasim for which 170 acres of land has been earmarked and development work is being carried on.
Addressing the gathering at the event, Mr. Moin A. Malik, Chief Executive Officer, Agility Logistics, said that almost 44 million containers move in Asia between different ports and its biggest volume is 4.5 million tonnes between Europe and Asia.
Almost 22 times growth is noticed within Asia alone as China’s global trade is estimated at dollars 2.38 trillion by 2012 and the Central Asian trade was 104 billion dollars in 2012, he added.