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Hutchison Ports Sohar welcomes the largest vessel berthing at Port of Sohar

In a momentous occasion, Hutchison Ports Sohar proudly welcomed the majestic M/V Berlin Express by Hapag-Lloyd, the largest container vessel to ever grace the shores of the Sultanate of Oman, on Tuesday, 25th July 2023.

The terminal came alive with a magnificent commemoration event attended by esteemed guests, including His Excellency Mohammed Abdullah Al Busaidi, the Wali of Sohar and Acting Governor of North Al Batinah, along with distinguished officials and guests from ROP-Customs, Oman Chamber of Commerce, and Industry, SOHAR Port & Freezone, and Hapag-Lloyd. This event celebrated the vessel’s historic arrival, marking a significant milestone for the Sultanate’s maritime industry in aligning with the Oman Logistics Strategy (SOLS) 2040.

The M/V Berlin Express, proudly presented by Hapag-Lloyd, stands tall as the inaugural vessel among the twelve remarkable additions boasting cutting-edge LNG dual-fuel propulsion. With an impressive length overall (LOA) of 399.90 metres and a staggering maximum capacity of 23,664 TEUs.

The vessel’s maiden voyage is part of the esteemed Asia Gulf Service (AG3), which connects major ports in Asia with the Middle East. The M/V Berlin Express is en-route to its highly anticipated official launch ceremony in Hamburg, Germany. This mega vessel call demonstrates expanded reach and fortified network of Hutchison Ports Sohar.

Commenting on the call, Anacin Kum, the CEO of Hutchison Ports Sohar said, “this is a significant milestone for our terminal as well as across Oman’s maritime and logistics industry. The arrival of the LNG dual-fuel Berlin Express at Sohar Port not only distinguishes it as the largest container vessel to grace our shores but also showcases its exemplary eco-friendliness. This moment resonates with Hutchison Ports’ Net-zero target by 2050, underscoring our dedication to sustainable practices and a greener future for the industry.

The arrival of the Berlin Express stands as a resounding testament to our terminal’s exceptional capacity to handle the world’s largest container ships. It serves as a proud affirmation of Ministry of Transport, Communications, and Information Technology’s visionary guidance towards achieving the objectives of Oman Vision 2040. Their leadership has been a guiding light inspiring us to remain steadfast in our commitment to delivering unparalleled service and exceeding the expectations of our esteemed customers.”

Omar bin Mahmood Al Mahrizi, Chief Executive Officer of SOHAR Freezone, DCEO SOHAR Port, said, ““As we continue to increase our capacity to handle large container vessels, the call of M/V Berlin Express by Hapag-Lloyd at SOHAR Port reinforces our credentials as a key logistics hub in Oman and the wider region. Boasting containers, liquids, and bulk terminals while sitting at the centre of global trade routes and providing excellent services and incentives, SOHAR is well-positioned for efficient and sustainable regional distribution and trade worldwide. Our growth and expansion align with the objectives laid out in Oman Vision 2040, the Oman Government’s overarching socioeconomic development plan for which strengthening transport capacities and capabilities is central.”

Dr. Maximilian Rothkopf, Chief Operating Officer at Hapag-Lloyd expressed: “We at Hapag-Lloyd are very happy, that our new state-of-the-art flagship‚ Berlin Express, made her first successful port call at the Port of Sohar, Oman during her maiden voyage. With 23,600 TEU capacity and 400 meters in length, this vessel is the biggest ship sailing under German flag ever. At the same time, she is paving the way into a more sustainable future for Hapag-Lloyd, being the first of 12 ordered dual-fuel ships running on LNG (Liquified Natural Gas). We will await our flagship for her first port call in Hamburg on October 2, where she will be christened by the First Lady, Elke Büdenbender, wife of the German Federal President, Frank Walter Steinmeier.”

In the initial half of 2023, we proudly expanded our services with the inclusion of three new services, facilitating direct connections between Sohar and various countries. This strategic enhancement empowers traders to engage in efficient and cost-effective import-export operations. Currently, our robust service network encompasses an impressive array of 16 regular sailings, spanning across 45 direct call ports and 112 port-pairs on a weekly basis. This comprehensive global connectivity showcases our steadfast commitment to seamlessly linking nations and bolstering international trade through our well-established network.

Hutchison Ports Sohar proudly reaffirms the unwavering commitment it has nurtured over the past two decades through substantial investments in skilled personnel, cutting-edge equipment, advanced technology, and world-class port infrastructure. This remarkable accomplishment has firmly placed Oman at the forefront of the maritime and logistics sector within the region.
Source: Hutchison Ports Sohar

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