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DP World, a company created in 2005 by merging Dubai Ports Authority and Dubai Ports International, operates more than 60 terminals across six continents, with container handling generating around 80% of its revenue. The company based in Dubai has 11 new developments and major expansions underway in 10 countries. The projects include London Gateway, Rotterdam Gateway, and terminal 2 and 3 at Jabel Ali Port.
DP’s numbers of expansion projects include single berth facility of 330 meters wharf length alongside its existing terminal operation at Nhava Sheva, Mumbai. The facility is expected to be operational in 2015. DP World will be investing approximately 200 million US dollars to build a container terminal of 330 meters wharf length and 17 hectares of yard which will have an annual handling capacity of 800,000 TEUs (twenty foot equivalent container units) and draft of 13.5 meters.
DP World operates today five Indian terminals (Chennai, Mundra, Nhava Sheva, Visakhapatnam, Cochin), and Asia Pacific and Indian Subcontinent region are stated to be the main drivers of its volume growth in the first six months of 2012, reporting a 12.1 percent increase in volume to 13.3 million TEU.
The company has also started to expand the wharf at the Middle East’s biggest transshipment terminal from 1,312 feet to 9,842 feet by the end of 2012. This expansion will allow the largest of three DP World terminals in the United Arab Emirates to handle up to six 15,000 TEUs vessels simultaneously. The UAE terminals also handled a record quarterly traffic of 3.1 million TEUs in the April-June period. The previous major expansion at Jebel Ali increased capacity by 5 million TEUs in 2008.
DP World boosted traffic at its 49 operational terminals in the first half of the year by 11 percent year-over-year to 26.2 million TEUs. The company’s 23 consolidated terminals handled 13.5 million TEUs, up 2.2 percent from the same period a year earlier.
DP World also announced this year its plans for its first major expansion of the Jebel Ali Port in three years. Construction on a 400-metre extension to a Jebel Ali quay will be increasing capacity by 1 million containers. The new facility at Jebel Ali Container Terminal 2 will be able to handle six large vessels simultaneously, increasing the capacity at any one time to 15 million twenty-foot equivalent container units. The expansion project is scheduled for completion by the end of next year.This project is expected to build the capacity at Jebel Ali reaching 19 million TEU by 2014, reinforcing its position as the biggest transshipment hub in the Middle East.
This expansion which will operate with the largest, most efficient quay cranes and have a draft of 17 meters which will be able to handle the world’s largest container vessels planned for the future.
DP World, which operates 60 terminals on six continents, has been growing its container traffic, which accounts for about 80 percent of revenue. The dock extension is the first large-scale expansion of the Jebel Ali facility since a capacity of 5 million TEU was added in 2008.
DP World’s growth has been attracting interest from investors in recent times. Nomura Securities International Company upgraded its earnings forecast for next year for the global operator by 6 percent. Deutsche Bank, EFG-Hermes and National Bank of Kuwait also recently upgraded their ratings on DP World to “buy.”
DP is also expected to soon begin construction work on the Yarimca terminals in Turkey. The terminal which will be fully owned by DP World will be built on the Asian side of Istanbul with a capacity of 1.3 million TEU upon completion. The project is part of the 10 major port developments that DP has planned.
DP World handled 14.2 million TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) across its portfolio of container terminals in the third quarter of 2012. This was 1% lower than the same period last year reflecting the divestment of three joint venture terminals and a decline in volume in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.
Another one of DP’s big projects that started in 2010 is the London Gateway which is a major new development under construction on the north bank of the River Thames in Thurrock, Essex. The construction comprises a large new deep-water port, which will be able to handle the biggest container ships in the world, as well as one of Europe’s largest logistics parks, providing effective access to London and the rest of Great Britain.
The development is expected to dramatically increase the capabilities of the Port of London in handling modern container shipping and help meet the growing demand for container handling at Britain’s ports.
The construction is expected to take several years, with the port and logistics park completed in stages. The first stage of construction is underway, in the form of a £400 million dredging and reclamation program, led by a joint venture between contractors.
Rotterdam World Gateway (RWG) is the other mega project that has started construction of the first phase of its deep-sea container terminal on Maasvlakte 2 in the Port of Rotterdam. The 108 hectare site with a quay wall of 1,150 meters, a quayside depth of 20 meters and a 550-metre quay specifically designed for barges has already been built by the Port of Rotterdam. The stack at the terminal will be equipped with 32 conventional automatic stacking cranes and 16 automatic cantilever cranes. Chairman of the RWG has expressed that the innovative terminal will make a major contribution to the further development of Rotterdam as the main port for North-West Europe from the moment it is opened. The terminal is said to open in the second half of 2014.
In 2006 DP World acquired the ownership of various U.S. ports but it was seen as highly controversial by many in the United States even though it was supported by the U.S. president of the time (George W. Bush). The US ports were sold shortly afterwards.
DP World’s rapid expansion through acquisition accelerated in March 2006 when the company purchased the fourth largest ports operator in the world, the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O) with 7 billion US dollars. DP World’s 10 projects in total are said to increase DP World’s total handling capacity to 102 million TEU by 2020.