King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam ... set for expansion.

The Saudi Ports Authority (Mawani) laid the foundation stone for upgradation and development of two container terminals at King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam under a build-operate-transfer (BOT) deal valued at over SR7 billion ($1.86 billion) signed with Saudi Global Ports (SGP).

The ceremony was attended by Omar Hariri, President of Mawani, and Engineer Abdullah Al-Zamil, SGP Chairman, alongside senior logistics and maritime executives.

The project is set to take the national maritime regulator a step closer to realigning its Saudi Vision 2030-inspired roadmap centered around optimising port operations and modernising infrastructure to build a booming and sustainable maritime ecosystem while fulfilling the aspirations of the National Transport and Logistics Strategy (NTLS) to position the kingdom as a global logistics destination connecting three major continents.

The concession will work on refurbishing berths and facilities across the port’s first container terminal besides expanding berths and overhauling the container yard within the second container terminal to enable the Arabian Gulf hub to handle giant containerships.

The development works will also add a custom-built sandbox to test cutting-edge technologies and conceptualise new processes before going online.

The project is expected to raise the port’s overall capacity by 120 per cent to 7.5 million TEUs and strengthen the nation’s supply chains, boost its foreign trade, and improve the kingdom’s rank in global indices.

As part of its long-term developmental strategy to deploy 160 high-impact projects at a total cost of over SR4 billion, Mawani is keen on partnering with leading industry players to transform Saudi ports into engines of growth and investment in the shipping and transportation sectors.