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Immense economic benefits through Hutchison ports

Hutchison Ports KICT is Pakistan’s leading deep water container terminal. The new facility is the closest Pakistan port to the shipping lanes in the Arabian Sea. Its prime location offers the shortest steaming time from the Fairway Buoy, and will bring real benefits to customers, relating to time, cost, reduction in risk of delays, and reduced carbon emissions. It has been in operation since 1998. It has three berths equipped with modern container-handling facilities. Hutchison Ports KICT is a member of Hong Kong based Hutchison Ports, the port and related services division of CK Hutchison Holding Limited (CK Hutchison). Hutchison Ports is the world’s leading port investor, developer and operator with a network of port operations in 51 ports, spanning 26 countries throughout Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, the Americas and Australasia. Over the years, Hutchison Ports has expanded into other logistics and transportation-related businesses including cruise ship terminals, airport operations, distribution centers, rail services and ship repair facilities.

Equipped with state-of-the-art cranes, Hutchison Ports Pakistan is one of the most efficient container terminals in the region. It is a deep seaport and can accommodate two mega vessels at a time. Hutchison Ports offers a quayside depth of 16 meters to meet the growing shipping needs in the country. Depending on commercial requirements, this may be deepened to 18 meters in the future. Last year, it deployed five new hybrid yard cranes to speed up operational efficiency in loading and offloading. The new deployment brings the terminal’s total number of hybrid yard cranes to 31 as the terminal continues with its productivity enhancement program and to provide better customer service. It will also help the company reduce emissions as well as protect and conserve air quality in the surrounding areas.

Hutchison Ports Pakistan has also signed agreement for a major crane purchase with Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co Ltd, China (ZPMC). In addition to the purchase of eight new cabin less remote controlled quay cranes, the terminal will acquire 24 remote-controlled rubber-tired gantry cranes (RTGCs) – the first of their kind in Pakistan. The new cranes will significantly increase the overall efficiency of operations. Following their delivery, the terminal will have a total of 16 remote-controlled quay cranes and 53 RTGCs.

 

First phase of Hutchison Ports commenced its commercial operations in February 2017, and at present it has the annual handling capacity of 1.5 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units). It is expected to complete the second phase of its $600 million project by the next year end to more than double the handling capacity. The terminal also plans to lay railway tracks and run trains within the terminal for efficient movement of containerized cargo.

Hutchison Ports Pakistan was presented the Container Terminal of the Year (South Asia) award at the inaugural Transport and Logistics Middle East Excellence Awards 2018. The country’s first deep-water container terminal was the only Pakistani company to be recognized at the ceremony, which was held in Dubai in 2018. The award recognizes and celebrates operational and technical excellence among the leaders in the transport and logistics industries in the Middle East and South Asian region.

Hutchison Ports Pakistan, the country’s first custom-built and deep-water container terminal, was recognized for its pioneering role in deep-water container handling in Pakistan and South Asia, including its introduction of innovative solutions — all of which holds the potential to support the country’s shipping industry through savings of time and money.

Through Hutchison Ports Pakistan, Pakistan’s economy stands to benefit immensely not only through the payment of port dues and other taxes and duties but through the creation of direct and indirect employment opportunities, transfer of technology, skills development of Pakistani engineers and other technical employees, cost savings accruing to exporters and importers, and overall efficiencies in Pakistan’s trade by sea.

The writer is a Karachi based freelance columnist and is a banker by profession. He could be reached on Twitter @ReluctantAhsan

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