Sunday, 17 October 2021 08:10 GMT

AD Ports to develop cruise terminal in Aqaba


(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) AD Ports Group, a leading facilitator of trade and logistics, announced on Sunday its latest overseas venture of setting up a cruise terminal at Marsa Zayed in Aqaba, Jordan.

The ports and free zone operator said in a statement that it signed a“heads of terms agreement” with the Aqaba Development Corporation that will see AD Ports Group take on the establishment of the cruise terminal, the first facility to be developed by AD Ports Group in Jordan and its first cruise facility outside of the UAE.

“The cruise terminal will serve as a gateway in the Port of Aqaba that will receive cruise ships passengers visiting the Red Sea, in addition to serving as a major attraction for the residents of Aqaba with a wide range of tourism, commercial, and entertainment services,” said the Abu Dhabi-based company, which manages 11 ports and terminals in the UAE and Guinea, and more than 550 square kilometres of industrial zones within Kizad and ZonesCorp.

Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, group CEO, AD Ports Group, said the creation and operation of a new cruise terminal at Marsa Zayed would be a milestone for Jordan's fast-growing cruise and tourism sector and is the first of many enhancement projects that we have planned.

“In addition, as part of our continued commitment to support the growth of Jordan's maritime industry, AD Ports Group, through its digital arm, Maqta Gateway, is leveraging its digital expertise to implement a robust Port Community System at the Aqaba ports ecosystem that will accelerate the exchange of goods and elevate commerce to new heights,” said Al Shamisi.

AD Ports Group, through its digital arm, Maqta Gateway, will also manage the implementation of an advanced Ports Community System (PCS) as per another heads of terms agreement. It will oversee communication between Aqaba ports and terminals operators, Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (Aseza), Aqaba Development Corporation, Jordan Maritime Commission, customs, support services and on-land connections for the Port of Aqaba.

AD Ports said it would work closely with the Aqaba Development Corporation to deploy the digital system to expand the technical capacity and capabilities of Aqaba ports by leveraging its long-standing and extensive expertise as a global facilitator of trade and logistics.

The agreement was signed during a visit by a senior delegation from Jordan headed by Eng. Nayef Ahmad Bakheet Altheeb, chief commissioner, Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority to Abu Dhabi and is the first of a series of strategic partnerships with AD Ports Group.

Hussein Alsafadi, CEO, Aqaba Development Corporation, said the agreement falls in line with the wider cooperation between Jordan and the UAE.

“Through their ambitious development of ports in Abu Dhabi and around the world, they have demonstrated their ambition and ability to evolve and drive growth in the maritime sector. Developing the cruise terminal in Aqaba will significantly support the growth of the tourism sector in the kingdom, which will expand the scope of onsite facilities and services.”

Alsafadi said the agreement would also facilitate the movement of cruise ship passengers arriving from countries across the Mediterranean Sea and Europe, who typically visit the Golden Triangle of Jordan.“Stretching from the desert landscape of Wadi Rum to the sandy beaches of Aqaba and the ancient city of Petra, the Golden Triangle is considered by many to be among the top tourism destinations within Jordan. This cooperation will also promote our tourism offerings, create new jobs, and strengthen Aqaba's status as a major regional hub.”

“We are confident that through our cooperation with AD Ports Group and Maqta Gateway, we will be able to keep pace with the rapid developments of digitisation in the transport and logistics sectors, as well as enhance our digital systems with the aim to provide world class services for port users in Aqaba,” he added.

Issac John Editorial Director of Khaleej Times, is a well-connected Indian journalist and an economic and financial commentator. He has been in the UAE's mainstream journalism for 35 years, including 23 years with Khaleej Times. A post-graduate in English and graduate in economics, he has won over two dozen awards. Acclaimed for his authentic and insightful analysis of global and regional businesses and economic trends, he is respected for his astute understanding of the local business scene. Click/tap here to subscribe to Khaleej Times news alerts on Telegram.

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