Oman ports get top UN ranking for container handling speed

Salalah port in Oman

Oman’s ports have been ranked No. 1 in the world for container handling speed in 2020 by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

According to UNCTAD’s annual 2020 index, which looked at the development of maritime transport last year, container vessels’ stay in the Sultanate’s ports averaged only 12.5 hours, including all entry, exit, loading and unloading operations.

The ranking caps efforts by Oman’s new integrated logistics provider Asyad and its partners in the public and private sectors to facilitate procedures in ports and introduce many world-class electronic solutions in handling operations.

It also comes in implementation of the National Logistics Strategy 2040, aimed at making the Sultanate a global logistics hub, notably by opening new direct maritime routes and forging alliances with international maritime firms to provide direct connection with Omani ports.

The UNCTAD report affirmed that the Sultanate, Poland and the United Arab Emirates were the most competent in handling containers, benefiting from a massive stock of transient goods that engage the three countries’ main stations as active destinations for private international operators.

The report said that the Sultanate also benefited from electronic procedures devised and endorsed prior to the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. This included pre-dated electronic clearance in business operations, electronic processing of cargo data 48 hours in advance and the expansion of electronic services for the exchange of documents and payments.

The Sultanate ports’ rating as the fastest in container handling is considered an international recognition of Oman’s global position in this type of service.

The Asyad Group connects the Sultanate’s ports with regional and international counterparts as a measure to speed up direct import. The Group supports this connectivity with a promotional campaign to encourage direct international liners to utilise the incentives offered by Omani ports.

Asyad, established in 2016, puts the capabilities of the Sultanate’s ports at the service of merchants, importers and exporters. It provides all sorts of shipping solutions for the transport of different types of commodities and goods from the country of origin.

It also operates an advanced customs clearance system in the Sultanate’s ports to clear 90 per cent of goods within the first hour of arrival of the vessel, while the remaining 20 per cent is cleared onboard at sea.

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