Posted on April 05, 2020

Despite the challenging situations created by the COVID-19 outbreak, ports in Qatar have delivered a strong performance in March. The ports have recorded 53 percent growth in general cargo volumes in March compared to February this year. 

Hamad Port, Ruwais Port and Doha Port handled 112,730 Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) containers; 131,472 tonnes general cargo; 59,601 livestock heads; 41,554 tonnes building materials and 6,088 units of vehicles during last month, said Mwani Qatar in a tweet, yesterday. The ports had handled 85,916 tonnes of general cargo; 5,750 units of vehicles and 85,643 livestock heads in February, this year. A total of 225 ships docked at these ports in March. Preventive measures taken by Qatar Ports Management Company (Mwani Qatar) have played crucial role in smooth functioning of ports in this challenging times. 

Mwani Qatar, in coordination with the Ministry of Public Health and relevant authorities, has implemented series of measures to limit the spread of coronavirus in the ports which will not only keep the workforce safe, but will also ensure uninterrupted supply of goods in the country. The measures include sanitisation of containers, installing thermal cameras, submission of COVID-19 disclosures and making workforce at the port aware about how to limit spread of the virus. Containers are sanitised during loading and unloading process and before delivery. Mwani Qatar is responsible for managing the nation’s seaports and shipping terminals.

The steps were taken months before to ensure that the maritime sector remains safe. In January, all ship agents were notified of the necessity of submitting COVID-19 disclosure and IMO accredited medical declaration. Qatari ports started this year on a positive note by delivering strong performance in January. Hamad Port, Doha Port and Ruwais Port had witnessed significant rise in cargo handling in the first month of this year. These ports handled over 50 percent more vehicles in January this year compared to same month in 2019, according to Mwani Qatar. General cargo volumes increased 22 percent, while container traffic increased by five percent during the month.

Qatar’s maritime sector had wrapped up a successful year by setting new volume and productivity benchmarks in 2019. Hamad Port, Ruwais Port and Doha Port received 4,082 vessels and handled 1.34 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units containers during the year.

source: The Peninsula