[16th November 2005 – Hong Kong] – Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) is pleased to announce today that it has entered into an agreement with the Sohar Industrial Port Company (SIPC) to invest and operate a container terminal in the Port of Sohar, Oman. The Port is managed by SIPC, which is a joint-venture between the Government of Sultanate of Oman and the Port of Rotterdam.
A new company, Oman International Container Terminal (OICT), is to be formed for this investment by HPH together with the Government of Oman, Steinweg of the Netherlands and a number of other well-established Omani investors.
OICT is scheduled to be operational in the second quarter of 2006. The terminal will have a quay length of 520 metres with a depth alongside of 16 metres, and will be equipped with post-Panamax quay cranes.
The next phase of development will include an additional quay length of 970 metres and a depth alongside of 18 metres, which will be capable of accommodating the latest generation of mega vessels. The development is expected to be completed by the end of 2007.
Commenting on the investment, Mr. John Meredith, Group Managing Director of HPH, said, “We are encouraged by the Government of Oman’s initiatives to develop the Port of Sohar into an industrial base and the divergent interests currently being pursued in the area.” Mr. Meredith further added, “Having the shared vision with the Government and SIPC, I am confident that OICT will rapidly establish itself as the premier container handling facility in the Gulf region.”
The Port of Sohar is located outside the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf of Oman, approximately 200 km from Muscat and 160 km from Dubai.