New maritime code on way


The revised code will amend or add regulations to existing legislation to support businesses in the sector

A new maritime code to enhance the transportation and logistics sector is underway in Bahrain.

The revised code will amend or add regulations to existing legislation to support businesses in the sector, according to Transportation and Telecommunications Ministry Port and Maritime Affairs (PMA) Under-Secretary Hassan Ali AlMajed.

This will also aim to boost customer experience at Bahrain’s main seaport, the Khalifa Bin Salman Port (KBSP), as part of the ministry’s plans to develop the port to welcome modern and latest container vessels.
“As the regulator for the sector, PMA is working on introducing a new maritime law that has all of the updated regulations needed for businesses to further thrive, and we are also working on deepening Bahrain’s channel to allow the third generation container vessels to access the port,” said Mr AlMajed.

“We have always implemented a partnership approach with our stakeholders, and in addition to our regular discussions with APM Terminals (APMT) Bahrain.

“We also regularly meet our clients who are operating in the sector to make sure that the services the port provides are in line with their expectations, and that we are offering efficiency levels that help them conduct their business.”

Mr AlMajed was speaking at a joint media briefing hosted yesterday by PMA and APMT, where he underlined the positive growth in the port’s performance statistics in 2017.

“KBSP, operated by APMT, has witnessed container volume growth by a compound annual growth rate of 10 per cent between 2009 and 2017,” he added.

“The port has also recorded an impressive 7pc growth in container volume in 2017, with an additional 21pc spike in general cargo with a positive outlook estimated for 2018.

“The majority of this volume is attributed to gateway cargo with the KBSP currently also handling two deep sea services – The Ocean Alliance MEA3 and MSC Cheetah Service.

“We are pleased to report this positive growth for 2017, which is in fact an extension of our growth over the past few years.

“PMA has been working hand in hand with APMT Bahrain to ensure that our customers get the very best services possible and that the regulatory environment is in place to enable this.

“Bahrain currently offers port facilities that some of our neighbouring countries don’t have in place, and so we are pleased to be able to offer transshipment services to shipping lines that want to call the region.

“The growth volumes speak for themselves and I’m happy that our joint efforts have succeeded in achieving our common goals.”

APMT aims to attract more transshipment this year, said APMT Bahrain chief executive and managing director Mark Hardiman.

“In 2018 APMT will be moving ahead with its drive to attract increased transshipment volumes to targeted countries in the Northern Gulf,” he said.

“We plan to demonstrate cost savings to shipping lines by routing these volumes via Bahrain especially with some of the mainliner services connecting Bahrain directly to key destinations in Asia.”