What Are The 10 Major Ports In Yemen?

Yemen is a sovereign state on the Arabian Peninsula, with its official capital being Sana’a. Yemen is ideally located for shipping and trade, bounded by the Gulf of Aden to the south and the Red Sea to the west Yemeni port.

The Ghur Dali Canal around the Horn of Africa is also close to Yemen. These are important maritime trade routes that have been in use for millennia. Its neighbours are Saudi Arabia to the north and Oman to the east. Yemen also has many islands around the Guardahui Strait. Yemen has had years of political instability that has affected the shipping industry. This has posed a major challenge for the Yemeni port, which is well-established in the region.

Shipping Hub

However, Yemeni port remains a shipping hub for global logistics companies around the world. Several shipping companies, such as Maersk, operate from Yemen. The majority of container and cargo ships entering Yemeni natural harbours transport goods intended for transshipment. There are also many import and export goods passing through the region.

Due to political conflict, ships approaching Yemen are subject to mandatory naval inspections. Additionally, ships in the region have had a long-standing problem with piracy. This problem extends around the Horn of Africa, including the Yemeni island of Socotra. Very few passenger ships dock in Somalia, and most ships in the region carry goods and cargo.

10 Major Ports In Yemen

Port Of Aden (Major Port)

Located east of the Red Sea and Bab el-Mandeb, the city of Aden is ideally located for Yemeni port. It sits on one of the world’s busiest waterways and is set in a crater that provides an excellent natural harbours. In fact, the port of Aden has a unique distinction of a being one of the few natural harbours in the world.

The port has heavy traffic due to its proximity to several key locations in Yemen. This includes shipments to both Yemen and neighbouring countries such as Saudi Arabia. The port of Aden is 13 kilometres long and stretches about 6 kilometres inland. Cargo ships have several berths in the main part of the port while arriving passenger ships dock at the nearby port of Tawahi.

Aden Container Terminal (ACT)

The container terminal in Aden primarily handles inbound container ship traffic. It has two Panamax berths and can accommodate vessels up to 350 metres in length. The maximum allowable draft for berthed vessels is 16 metres. The terminal has four gantry cranes with a maximum load capacity of 40 tonnes. The terminal also has an adjacent container depot with a capacity of up to 10,000 TEU. The port’s spreader cranes can handle TEU stacks up to four units high.

Aden Refinery Terminal

Along with the Aden Container Terminal (ACT) and the Port of Aden, the Refinery Terminal is also a very busy section of the port. It was built to handle crude oil, petroleum, and refined products. The equipment available at the Refinery Terminal includes Atmospheric Distillation Units, Vacuum Distillation Units, LPG Units, Asphalt Units, Platform Units, etc.

Al Hodeidah Port

The port, locally known as Al Hudaydah Port, is a major port on the Red Sea. Al Hudaydah is a large city on the west coast of Yemen. The port specialises in the export of coffee, cotton, and dates. Hidden industries in the surrounding area also generate large export markets. The port has been in operation since the 19th century and has undergone significant expansion since its opening during the Ottoman period.

The port has eight berths and can accommodate vessels up to 200 metres in length. Tugboats are available for all vessels passing through the area. The berths can accommodate general cargo, grain bulk cargo, and container units.

Saleef Port Yemen’s

Saleef Port is located just 50 km north of Al Hodeidah Port. It is located in the Gulf of Kamaran in western Yemen. Saleef is close to the Yemeni-Saudi Arabian border but very remote. Rail and road connections in the region are poor and this is affecting the port’s ability to properly handle arriving cargo. Unfortunately, the current political scenario will only worsen the situation at Saleef Port.

Al Makkah Port

Al Makha is an important port in Yemen, located on the Red Sea just an off the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, behind the largest ports in Aden and Al Hodeidah. Located in Taiz Governorate, it has long played an important role as a port in Yemen, partly due to its export of coffee. Coffee has been Al Makha’s main export for three centuries, and the famous Mocha coffee bean is named after the port (makha is pronounced mocha). Farms and plantations in the interior delivered their coffee to the port, from where it was shipped all over the world.

Ras Isa Oil Terminal

Aden’s main oil terminal, Ras Isa, is an important port in Yemen. It is currently owned and managed by the Texas-based Yemen Hunt Oil Group. Additional facilities and support are provided by the Ports and Marine Services Authority (PMAC), which operates under the Government of Yemen. It provides pilotage facilities, tugboats, and support for oil tankers.

Ras Isa terminal is known for the Marib-Ras Isa pipeline that runs between the port and the Marib oil fields. Ras Isa is a deep-water port, making it ideal for large-scale oil production off the Red Sea coast. Oil supertankers that float in front of the main port facilities are 351 metres long and have a capacity of 405,000 tonnes. The port’s allowable sea depth is 35 metres, allowing large supertankers to dock and discharge their cargo without the need for additional transfer equipment.

Ash-Shihr Port And Oil Terminal

Ash-Shihr Terminal is a small Yemeni port on the southern side of the Arabian Peninsula, part of Hadhramaut Governorate. The port mainly exports incense, fish, and oil, which the surrounding region is known for. The oil terminal is located on the same grounds as the port and is operated by the Masila Oil Exploration and Production Company, locally known as Petro Masila.

Wharf Of Ma’alla

The Wharf of Ma’allais is located in Aden City and operates as a multipurpose terminal and container terminal. It has several recently constructed berths and is capable of handling general cargo and bulk carriers. In addition, the Wharf of Ma’alla also has facilities to handle grain and flour deliveries. In 1999, a silo and flour mill were built to directly handle bulk deliveries.

Cargo ships berth at the inner harbour and at the main terminal at Ma’alla. Bulk carriers under 180 metres in length also berth at the Ma’alla terminal. There are also two container terminals capable of accommodating Panamax vessels. There is a facility to process bulk cement and related commodities. Wheat is also a commodity that is transported across the wharf, and there is a bottling facility to prepare the product for packaging.

Mukalla Port

Mukalla Port is one of the smallest ports in Yemen. It is located in the south of the country, near the border with Oman. Located on the Gulf of Aden and mainly handles overflow from the surrounding major ports (such as the Port of Aden). It has a large dry dock for repair and maintenance works. Due to the lack of such facilities in Mukalla, it specialises in repairing small and medium sized vessels. Its location means it is protected from most weather conditions.

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