POST TIME: 25 August, 2019 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 24 August, 2019 11:50:22 PM
Top Saudi port builder to develop maritime sector in Bangladesh

Top Saudi port builder to develop 
maritime sector in Bangladesh

The shipping ministry has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea Gateway Terminal (RSGT) for developing seaports, container terminals, waterways and other infrastructures in the maritime sector in Bangladesh.

The non-binding MoU was signed for multiple projects. These will include, but not limited to, investment opportunities at the Chattogram and Payra seaports as well as in container services at the Inland Container Depot in Pubail, Gazipur and other maritime investments in Bangladesh, sources said.

Shipping secretary Md. Abdus Samad and director of global investments for RSGT Gagan Seksaria signed the MoU on behalf of their respective organizations on July 31.

RSGT may pursue opportunities in other Bangladeshi ports and also identify available mechanisms for building projects and strategic partnership.

“The investment amount is yet to be announced by the RSGT authority. We just signed the MoU and it would take time to get the details regarding the investment volume,” the shipping secretary told The Independent.

Samad informed that the shipping ministry had taken up various projects that include developing the Chattogram, Payra and Mongla seaports, setting up inland container depots, restoring waterways through dredging, constructing river ports and walkways alongside riverbanks to prevent encroachment.

“Saudi Arabia is always supporting our country in different sectors. It will continue its support in the socio-economic development of Bangladesh,” he said.

He added that hopefully the excellent ties between the two countries would be strengthened by cooperating in the fields of trade and maritime sector.

RSGT is a limited liability company incorporated under the laws of Saudi Arabia. It expressed its interest to work with Bangladesh’s shipping ministry.

On March 7, RSGT representatives had visited Dhaka as part of a high-level delegation headed by two Saudi ministers. The 34-member delegation had joined the dialogue on Saudi Arabia-Bangladesh Investment Cooperation. The event was co-hosted by BIDA, the foreign ministry and the Bangladeshi embassy in Riyadh at Dhaka’s Hotel Intercontinental.

RSGT has built the newest flagship container terminal at Jeddah Islamic Port. A world-class terminal spearheaded by the Saudi Industrial Services group SISCO, it is also the first privately funded, Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) port development agreement in Saudi Arabia.

Spread over 750,000 square meters, the facility was constructed to set a benchmark in advancing other port terminals around the region, exploiting approaches such as intelligent design and layout, cutting-edge technologies and value-added logistics capabilities; ensuring efficiency within whole supply chain, and meeting the demands of modern day trade.

RSGT is next to Logipoint (previously Tusdeer), which is Saudi Arabia’s first export and re-export zone “affiliation” that provides a thriving integrated logistics hub on the coasts of Red Sea.

The accomplishment undoubtedly resonates with RSGT’s vision to be “an engine of growth for the economy and business” by providing world class integrated logistics solutions as well as port development and operations.

In May 2010, five months after trial operations, JIP was ranked as ‘4 stars’

in the same league as many of the world’s leading ports in terms of efficiency of cargo handling, port fees, information services, problem-solving and application of global standards.

The $540 million RSGT is the first BOT project in Saudi Arabia that has clearly redefined the standard of terminal operations in the Red Sea basin and beyond.

The terminal started commercial operations on December 22, 2009. A year later in December 22, 2010, during an internationally rocky year, the terminal outperformed expectations due to aggressive commercial planning combined with relentless focus on operational/administrative costs.

The number of vessels handled at the terminal has increased from 14 vessels in January 2010 to 64 vessels in November 2011 with eight major global shipping lines for Asia, Middle East, Europe and America bound.

RSGT received the CSCL Star (14,100 +TEU) vessel on its first Red Sea call on June 21, 2011.

Since then, the company has been receiving an increasing number of Ultra Large Container Vessels (14,000+ TEUS) on a regular basis. These include 19,100 TEUS CSCL GLOBE, 18,000 TEUS Mayview Maersk, and 19,000 TEUS Al Nefud, which is a clear sign of the attraction the green-field container facility has brought to Saudi Arabia’s busiest port.