Iraq opens new berths to raise the value of its commercial exports

Iraq opens new berths to raise the value of its commercial exports

2022.03.18 – 17:18

Iraq opens new berths to raise the value of its commercial exportsBaghdad – people

During the next few days, Iraq is scheduled to open a number of new berths in three main commercial ports on the Arabian Gulf, for the purpose of increasing the value of its exports in the future.

A spokesman for the General Company for Iraqi Ports, Anmar Al-Safi, said in a press statement: “The company has taken many measures in the past period in order to increase the capacity of the volume of imports and cargo, especially in the northern and southern Umm Qasr port, where more than 70 percent of the trade passes through them. Iraq, as well as the port of Khor al-Zubayr.

Al-Safi added, “The coming days will witness the opening of many berths at the level of Khor Al-Zubair, with 4 berths, including the Japanese Misubishi berth. These are projects funded by Japan.”

He added, “Also, 5 new berths will be inaugurated in Umm Qasr Port, in addition to the rotation basin, which includes two berths, as well as in the southern port of Umm Qasr there are also new berths, and other berths are being developed.”

All of these sidewalks have been modernized with mechanisms, equipment and electronic devices, as most of the transactions have become digital, which helps the company in reducing costs and also helps it complete its work at the required sufficient speed.

Iraq owns five commercial ports linked to the Gulf. In addition to the out-of-service stronghold, there are four other ports: Umm Qasr Al Shamali, Umm Qasr Al Janoubi, Khor Al Zubair, and Abu Flus.

Baghdad is working on the completion of the great port of Faw, which constitutes a major qualitative leap due to its strategic location and its entrance to the deep Gulf waters, which allow the reception of large ships.

In an economy based on oil, and in light of the significant weakness in the agricultural and industrial sectors and the absence of any possibility of obtaining revenue from them, customs duties constitute the most important source of revenue. But the government is also seeking to expand export operations through maritime trade portals.

According to the World Trade Organization, Iraq has exported an average of $97.2 billion in goods and services since 2018, but it was 98 percent of oil and gas.

At the same time, it imports annually an average of nearly $70 billion in various goods and services, such as electricity, wheat, cars, and others.

Al-Safi explained that the Marine Drilling Department began digging the navigation channels and berth interfaces, in order for the depths to receive vessels of normal draft, which are large and giant vessels.

In the past, giant cargo ships unloaded their cargo on small ships called “coasts”, and then the small ships reached the Iraqi ports.

But at the present time, cargo ships arrive from their port of departure from any country to the ports of Iraq directly and without any problems or obstacles.

Al-Safi pointed out that the eastern bank of River No. 1 in the port of Umm Qasr, many berths were established on it through investment and contracts for joint operation, after it was a dumping ground and was not prepared to receive cargo ships or dock containers.

Official figures indicate that there is a great development in the ports, for example, the northern port of Umm Qasr last February alone received 37 large cargo ships, a number that the port would not have achieved in one month, in addition to the advanced and large loads and containers.

Joint operating contracts are considered a major resource for Iraqi ports, as they improved the situation and growth of revenues, especially since these companies dealt with large international shipping lines and thus attract them to Iraq.