CARGO HANDLING & FACILITATION THOUGH PORTS
PRIVATE SECTOR'S ROLE IS REMARKABLE
INTERVIEW: CAPT. HALEEM A. SIDDIQUI, CHAIRMAN MARINE GROUP OF COMPANIES
May 2 - 15, 2011
The efficient ports are the lifeline of the economy, playing a key role for the promotion of trade and industry and thus helping in achieving economic growth of many countries around the world.
Capt. Haleem A. Siddiqui, Chairman Marine Group of Companies, looks visibly confident over his outstanding achievements especially the prestigious development of a well equipped and the most modern container terminal i.e. Pakistan International Container Terminal (PICT) at Karachi port. The container handling operations and quality cargo facilitation speaks itself about the amount of passion and efforts, he put in to develop this remarkable project of container handling which can be described as second to none in the port facilitation services.
The terminal developed by Marine Group of Companies offers the most modern and deep berths in Pakistan with a planned draft of 13.5 meters and ensures to maintain the sanctioned depth even during monsoon. PICT with its substantial spare yard space on the East Wharf makes the handling operation more impressive where latest container scanning and radiation detection facility makes the operation well secured, while the terminal works round the clock.
Strengthened with handling capacity of over 750,000 TEUs per annum the terminal supplements its operations with the availability of onsite rail link to upcountry.
MARINE GROUP OF COMPANIES
- Pakistan International Container Terminal Ltd. (Container Terminal Operator)
- Premier Mercantile Services (Pvt) Ltd Stevedores since 1964.
- Port Link International Services (Pvt) Limited (Shipping Agents for Australia National Lines),
- AMI Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd (Agents for AMI Middle East),
- Pegasus Consultancy (Pvt) Ltd (Exhibition and Event Managers),
- Travel Club (Pvt) Ltd (Travel Agency),
- Premier Software (Pvt) Ltd (Software Developer),
- Pollux & Castor Shipping (Pvt) Ltd (Logistics Provider),
- Marine Services (Trading Division),
- Cargo Link (Pvt) Ltd (Industrial Supplies),
- Marine International Container Terminal (Pvt) Ltd (Inland Container Depot at Lahore
- Pakistan International Bulk Terminal (Pvt) Ltd,
- Bulk Terminal Operator for Coal, Clinker and Cement at Port Qasim,
- Marine Logistics (Pvt) Ltd (Transportation & Logistics)
Capt. Haleem who is committed to the economic potential and resources available in Pakistan strongly believes in the potential of the hardworking and outstanding human resource available in Pakistan. Attaching a great amount of hope and confidence in the economic future of the country despite all persisting odds faced by the country, Haleem was quite optimistic about the economic future of the country. "Time will come when Pakistan would emerge as a power on the world's economic map. Actually, we have to learn to trust within our own resources and people. We are not different from others. See the history of US and other Western countries all of them have passed through worst situation than what we are facing but today they are called developed economies. We should not give up nor do we discourage our people by making hue and cry over economic, social and political issues. We should encourage our people that they have the capacity to weather the storm with patience and courage, however we need to evolve positive policies and effective follow up by brushing aside petty differences for the sake of the country and the nation, he observed.
Describing the ports in Pakistan as a blessing, Capt. Haleem said the value of our ports should not be underestimated because these ports can alone do a magic in the promotion of trade and industry as well as supplementing economies ties within the region. Make your ports efficient if you desire to see your trade and industry vibrant because an inefficient port is equally damaging to the economic growth.
Hence, we have no option but to make our ports efficient enough to achieve our economic goals. It is the efficient handling and facilitation of cargo through the port that helps generating activity in all economic spheres. Capt. Haleem paid glowing tributes to the efforts of the private sector in developing quality port services and quality handling and facilitation of cargo through well equipped terminals both at Karachi Port and Port Qasim with an investment roughly estimated around $1.5 billion.
He asserted that to put these resources for the good of the country and the people we need to develop not only the port services and handling operations but essentially develop the much-needed infrastructure facilities linked with the port operations and services. These infrastructural facilities include improved hinterland rail and road transportation, uninterrupted power and water supplies, and other necessities to attract local and international investments. Generally speaking the development of infrastructure is a prerequisite for economic growth yet it calls for huge investment which cannot be done by the government alone, hence the confidence of the private sector has to be built up for a public and private partnership for accomplishing the gigantic task of infrastructure developments.
He regretted that lack of coordination and collective approach among the authorities responsible for port development is hindering the growth and development of our ports. There is a need for collective approach and efforts with an element of trust on the capacity of the private sector in Pakistan, which has the potential to open a new chapter of growth on the port and shipping landscape in the country.
Pakistan being the member of SAARC region has valuable economic opportunities to capitalize on huge economic resources available within the region.
The situation calls for strengthening ties with countries in the region for the sake of economic wellbeing of the people. Besides the SAARC countries, we need to divert our focus from the West to our trusted friend China, which alone has the capacity address our economic woes.