Developing the Port of Sohar - bulk iron ore jetty
Sohar Port Special Project Division
Strait of Hormuz, Oman
Ports and terminals
Located just before the Strait of Hormuz – a major shipping channel between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman – the deep-sea port of Sohar is within easy reach of the prosperous economies of the Gulf and the Indian subcontinent, and close in proximity to Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Al Ain, and Oman’s capital Muscat, 220 kilometres away.
The Port of Sohar operates as a 50/50 joint venture between the Government of Oman and the Port of Rotterdam. Since opening in 2004, there has been a steady increase in the number of vessels calling at the port, and in 2010, it handled more than 2,200 ship movements. The development of the port by the Omani Government is part of a plan to diversify the country’s economy away from oil. The port houses three clusters: logistics, petrochemicals and metals. Recently the port also started the development of a Special Economic Zone for downstream and logistics companies.
Brazilian mining company Vale, the world’s largest producer of iron ore pellets, has constructed a processing plant near the port, where it will convert iron ore to steel pellets for onward export. Also iron ore will be distributed to the Middle East and North Africa from Sohar.
To facilitate the import and export of materials and products associated with facility, a new bulk iron ore jetty is undergoing construction. When the project completes in September 2011, Vale will operate the jetty, which will provide berthing facilities for ships importing the iron ore from Brazil, and for ships exporting the iron ore and the steel pellets to the Middle and Far East.