Photo: Illustration. Image by Navingo

CMA CGM resumes calls to Beirut

As the operational situation in the Port of Beirut is now back to normal again, French shipping major CMA CGM has resumed calls to this port.

“Damages to Beirut terminal being less serious than what could be expected after the tragic events that took place on 4 August, a first CMA CGM vessel m/v Nicolas Delmas has been operated with success on Monday,” CMA CGM said.

The company added that all CMA CGM lines will resume their calls at Beirut port according to their normal schedules. What is more, CMA CGM said that its intermodal services will be fully ensured in Lebanon thanks to the mobilization of the company’s local staff and partners.

As Offshore Energy reported last week, CMA CGM’s headquarters in Lebanon, located a few hundred meters from the site of the explosion, was severely damaged. Several workers were injured, with one of them reported missing on 6 August.

The group continued to serve Lebanon through Tripoli ports, located 80 km from Beirut and launched a contingency plan with three temporary offices opened in Beirut and Tripoli.

Earlier this week, German container shipping company Hapag-Lloyd also reinstated its services to the Port of Beirut.

On 4 August, two explosions occurred at the Port of Beirut, with the second being extremely powerful, after 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate stored improperly in a warehouse at the port caught fire. The blast killed more than 200 people and injured around 6,000, leaving thousands homeless.

This week, first vessels started calling Beirut again and the port is gradually resuming operations in an effort to secure goods for local markets.

On 12 August, Raoul Take, Lebanon’s Minister of Economy and Trade, said on Twitter that twelve of the port’s sixteen cranes are operational again. He added that there is no flour or bread crisis in Lebanon, as the local mills have flour stocks of 32,000 tonnes, with an additional 110,000 tonnes expected to arrive in the next two weeks.

CMA CGM launches “A Humanitarian Ship for Lebanon” campaign

On 10 August, CMA CGM announced the launch of “A Humanitarian Ship for Lebanon” campaign, contributing to international solidarity efforts by transporting medical equipment and essential goods and products to support the Lebanese population, following the devastating explosions that hit Beirut.

As informed, the campaign will allow for the transport of emergency equipment and essential goods and products provided by the CMA CGM Foundation’s NGO partners and the group’s partner companies. The initiative also has the support of deeply engaged French public institutions which have been mobilized.

One of the CMA CGM’s roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) vessels will be deviated from its usual service to travel from Marseille to Beirut in the very near future. RoRo vessels are suited to the needs of humanitarian transportation — they can carry containers, motor vehicles and pallets. The CMA CGM Group is bearing all shipping and port operation costs and providing a storage facility in Marseille until the vessel departs.

The group is mobilizing its teams to centralize, consolidate and transport the humanitarian supplies of participating organizations which have a clearly identified and vetted structure to receive them on Lebanese soil. CMA CGM further said it is setting up an operational unit in Marseille and Beirut to review requests and organize delivery.

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