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APL and Port of Salalah sign terminal JV

Singapore: APL and Port of Salalah have today announced the creation of a 50:50 joint venture to operate a new 1.6m teu two-berth container terminal scheduled to launch in 2011. The venture covers a 28-hectare deepsea facility that will have a total quay length of 700mtrs and be capable of servicing container vessels of more than 10,000teu.

"The partnership with Port of Salalah is part of our long-term commitment to enhance our service to customers," said Ron Widdows, group ceo of APL parent company Neptune Orient Lines (NOL). "Salalah's location on the southwest coast of Oman makes it one of the most ideal transshipment hubs connecting the East-West container routes to the fast-growing Middle East and South Asia regions."

"This deal will enable us to acquire new business and complements the network of other arrangements we have in the Middle East region that are vital to our service capability, including into the Arabian Gulf where it will enhance what we already do."

The Port of Salalah currently has six container berths, with a capacity of 4.5m teu. Port of Salalah has a 30-year concession to operate the port and also acts as the Port Authority. APM Terminals owns 30% of Port of Salalah, with public and private Omani interests owning the balance. The joint venture will invest in super post panamax cranes and other container handling equipment and systems.

Port of Salalah ceo Martijn van de Linde said, "Having partnered with APL since 2003, we are pleased to announce a strengthening of our relationship and the execution of this joint venture agreement. This agreement ensures guaranteed access to capacity for APL in one of the world's most desirable locations for transshipment. For Port of Salalah it secures the customer base and related organic growth for the long term. Having a partner such as APL that shares our enthusiasm for the future of the port of Salalah is a positive thing for both companies as well as for the Dhofar region and the Sultanate of Oman as a whole."  [04/02/09]

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