Infrastructure development and renovation works worth around QR2bn would be taken up at Doha Port in the second quarter of 2017, HE the Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim Seif Ahmed al-Sulaiti said on Monday.
The works will include extensive dredging in the area surrounding the port to ensure the smooth arrival of large vessels, particularly cruise ships.
HE the Minister made the observation while speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the two-day Qatar Transport Safety Forum, which began in Doha on Monday.
As part of the development plans for the port, which are expected to be carried out in two phases from April next year, both maintenance of the facilities and canal deepening work will be carried out. When the works are under way, most of the traffic to Doha Port will be diverted to the new, larger Hamad Port, which lies to the south of Doha.
There are plans to redevelop Doha Port to make it a destination for cruise ships and receive more tourists, Gulf Times had reported earlier, quoting a senior Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) official.
The move is part of the authority’s plan to build and further develop infrastructure in the country to promote cruise tourism, QTA chief tourism development officer Hassan al-Ibrahim had said.
The official had also expressed optimism that Doha Port would soon become one of the leading cruise terminals in the region.
Recently, through an advertisement published in local newspapers, the Ministry of Transport and Communications announced "the start of operations on general cargo and movement from Doha Port to Hamad Port as of October 15, 2016”.
During the welcome ceremony for Hamad Port’s first vessel in July 2015, HE al-Sulaiti had said the new facility was expected to handle more than 6mn containers a year once all three phases of the project were completed. HE the Minister, who is also the chairman of the Hamad Port Steering Committee, explained that Phase 1 of the project was expected to be completed by the end of 2016, allowing Hamad Port to handle 2mn containers.
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