Local News

.Seminar: Demands to Develop Mukalla Port and Boost Its Competitiveness

A seminar was held in the city of Mukalla, Hadramout governorate, on "The Private Sector's Vision for the Development and Rehabilitation of Mukalla Port"

 The seminar, which was organized by Studies & Economic Media Center in cooperation with the Hadhramaut Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Economic Reforms Team, and attended by representatives of the Arabian Sea Ports Corporation and a number of specialized businessmen, office managers and relevant authorities in the governorate, aimed to enrich the policy paper for the development and rehabilitation of Mukalla Port, which was prepared by the Center in cooperation with the Economic Reforms Team.

At the opening of the seminar, the director of the Arab Sea Ports Corporation, Engineer Salem Basmir, stressed the need to develop and rehabilitate the port of Mukalla in line with the needs and requirements during the next stage. He said that the process of developing the port of Mukalla needs to work in several tracks, including the training of the staffs working in the port, the development of infrastructure, providing new equipment, modern systems, building new docks, as well as expanding the port’s area to house a large number of containers, noting that the port of Mukalla has become surrounded by a number of government buildings and institutions.

About the commercial activity in the port, Basmir said that the port’s activity is unstable and fluctuating from year to year according to the conditions of the country that everyone knows, and the level of revenue was the highest in the year 2020. He uncovered that there are a number of traders who diverted their goods to other local ports due to the delay and the high taxes on ships Mukalla port.

About the port of Broome, Basmir said that the expansion of the commercial Broome port project was supposed to start in 2017, after completing the studies phase through one of the specialized French companies, but the Government Tenders Committee apologized for not financing the project on the grounds that the cost was too high, amounting to 150 million dollars. "It was a great shock for the people of Hadhramaut because there were four years of studies work," he said.

Basmir added that when the state refused to finance the Broome port construction project and demanded to refer it to the private sector, studies were sent to the Saudi Development Fund to finance it through the Ministry of Planning, but unfortunately the country got into a political turning point that led to the suspension of many projects, including the Broome port project. The expansion was aiming to boost the commercial, economic and investment activity of the Port, which suffers from some problems in terms of the small number of docks and its inability to receive some giant ships.

The director of the Arab Sea Ports Corporation noted that the financing of Broome port was chosen for its low cost compared to the financing of Daba port costing approximately one billion dollars, which is a very large amount and hard to be financed at this difficult stage, explaining that such projects need the finance participation of private sector.

For her part, the representative of Studies & Economic Media Center, Hadbaa Al-Yazidi, said that this seminar comes to stand in front of all the problems, challenges and difficulties faced by the port of Mukalla and to develop it as an important port in the region. She hoped that the seminar came out with some recommendations and proposals that hit the target, which is developing the port for the benefit of Hadhramaut and neighboring governorates

She added that in light of the closure of a number of ports, Mukalla port was supposed to be everyone's destination. However, for not completing its development phases, there was a lot of suffering and problems that need solutions and actions.

 For his part, the researcher, Muhammad Saleh Al-Kathiri, highlighted the difficulties and challenges included in the general policy paper for the development and rehabilitation of Mukalla Port.  He added that over two months, he held several meetings with the port officials, marine companies and traders to assess the situation and search in developing Mukalla port for a greater role in the coming days.

 "Mukalla Port deserves a lot of developments in all human resources and technical fields in partnership with the private sector to keep abreast with the ports of a number of neighboring countries involving the private sector in the development process of their ports, which gave them a top rank in the region's ports," added Al-Kathiri.

Lawyer Magdy Bouabis, representative of the Hadhramaut Chamber of Commerce and Industry, also praised the idea of discussing an important issue for Hadhramaut, which is the development and rehabilitation of a historic, vital and important port of Mukalla.  He blamed the traders and businessmen for not attending many important seminars despite inviting them to put forth their suggestions and ideas. He hoped that the seminar would provide important recommendations that would speed up taking urgent steps to start making a qualitative leap for the infrastructure of Mukalla Port during the coming period.

The participants discussed the problems and proposals for solutions included in the general policy paper on developing and rehabilitating the port of Mukalla, enriching it with many ideas and observations.

It is noteworthy that the Studies & Economic Media Center is a civil society organization working for a successful and transparent Yemeni economy by promoting awareness of economic and development issues, transparency and good governance, and creating professional media.

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