Saudi king inaugurates construction of huge maritime complex

Saudi king Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has this week laid the cornerstone of the giant, multi-billion maritime complex, near Jubail in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. 

The complex is a commercial maritime project said to be the largest of its kind in the region in terms of service capacity, “set to make Saudi Arabia a strategic maritime logistics hub.”

According to the national oil company Saudi Aramco, the maritime complex complements the growth of the Saudi energy industry and helps to meet the development, localization and diversification objectives outlined by Saudi Vision 2030.

The development of the complex will start with a maritime yard as an anchor project to be completed in 2021. It will be managed and maintained by Saudi Aramco’s proposed joint venture with The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri), Hyundai Heavy Industries Co, and Lamprell PLC.

The $4.3 billion facility will offer engineering, manufacturing, and repair services for offshore rigs, commercial vessels, and offshore service vessels.

By 2030, the complex is set to contribute approximately 64 billion Saudi Riyals to the Kingdom’s GDP per year, which will reduce maritime-related imports by 45 billion Saudi Riyals and create more than 80,000 job opportunities by 2030, Saudi Aramco said in a statement.

Khalid Al-Falih, Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and Chairman of Saudi Aramco said: “Today marks a groundbreaking example of well-studied efforts towards the diversification of economy with the inauguration of the King Salman International Maritime Complex; such diversification is achieved by investing all available resources in the Kingdom and opening doors for strategic industries to operate and flourish.”

The complex is expected to start primary operations in the beginning of 2019. The entire complex is expected to reach full operational capacity by 2021.