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First phase of Khalifa Port to come online in 2012

The first phase of Abu Dhabi's $2.18 billion (Dh10.2 billion) Khalifa Port will become operational in 2012 and the capital plans to develop smaller ports to cope with increasing traffic. The initial capacity of the new port is 2 million TEUs (twenty foot equivalent units) and eight million tonnes of general cargo annually, nearly four times more than the current capacity of the largest existing port. "The Khalifa Port will be built in five phases. Phase one will be ready end 2012," Mohammad Al Shamsi, Port Unit vice-president, Khalifa Port and Industrial Zone (KPIZ) told a conference. The operations of the existing Mina Zayed will be shifted to the Khalifa Port in late 2012, he said. Mina Zayed handled 530,000 TEUs in 2009 and 4.3 million tonnes of general cargo, he said. The KPIZ is also focusing on developing small ports around the emirate. At least four smaller ports are under development, including the Mina Mussafah. The approximately $408 million Mina Mussafah channel relocation project will be completed by June this year, he said. "This port will service existing and future clients in the Mussafah industrial area and the nearby industrial zones," he said, adding that the port would be transferred to the Abu Dhabi Ports Company in July. The other ports being developed are the Shahama port, Ras Al Gaf and Al Sadr, he said. An upcoming aluminium smelter and other plants in sectors such as chemicals, glass and paper in the industrial zone will ensure steady traffic at the Khalifa port.

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