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Hutchison Ports Sohar welcomes mega containership

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Hutchison Ports Sohar welcomed the imposing M/V Berlin Express by Hapag-Lloyd, the largest container vessel to ever grace the shores of the Sultanate of Oman, on Tuesday, July 25, 2023.

Receiving the mega vessel on its arrival in Sohar Port were Mohammed Abdullah al Busaidi, the Wali of Suhar and Acting Governor of North Al Batinah, along with distinguished officials and guests from ROP-Customs, Oman Chamber of Commerce, and Industry, SOHAR Port & Freezone, and Hapag-Lloyd. This event celebrated the vessel's historic arrival, marking a significant milestone for the Sultanate's maritime industry in aligning with the Oman Logistics Strategy (SOLS) 2040.

The M/V Berlin Express stands tall as the inaugural vessel among the twelve remarkable additions boasting cutting-edge LNG dual-fuel propulsion. With an impressive length overall (LOA) of 399.90 metres and a staggering maximum capacity of 23,664 TEUs.

The vessel’s maiden voyage is part of the esteemed Asia Gulf Service (AG3), which connects major ports in Asia with the Middle East. The M/V Berlin Express is en-route to its highly anticipated official launch ceremony in Hamburg, Germany. This mega vessel call demonstrates expanded reach and fortified network of Hutchison Ports Sohar.

Commenting on the call, Anacin Kum, the CEO of Hutchison Ports Sohar said, “This is a significant milestone for our terminal as well as across Oman's maritime and logistics industry. The arrival of the LNG dual-fuel Berlin Express at Sohar Port not only distinguishes it as the largest container vessel to grace our shores but also showcases its exemplary eco-friendliness. This moment resonates with Hutchison Ports' Net-zero target by 2050, underscoring our dedication to sustainable practices and a greener future for the industry.”

Omar bin Mahmood al Mahrizi, Chief Executive Officer of SOHAR Freezone, DCEO SOHAR Port, said, ““As we continue to increase our capacity to handle large container vessels, the call of M/V Berlin Express by Hapag-Lloyd at SOHAR Port reinforces our credentials as a key logistics hub in Oman and the wider region. Boasting containers, liquids, and bulk terminals while sitting at the centre of global trade routes and providing excellent services and incentives, SOHAR is well-positioned for efficient and sustainable regional distribution and trade worldwide.”

Dr Maximilian Rothkopf, Chief Operating Officer at Hapag-Lloyd expressed: “We at Hapag-Lloyd are very happy, that our new state-of-the-art flagship‚ Berlin Express, made her first successful port call at the Port of Sohar, Oman during her maiden voyage. With 23,600 TEU capacity and 400 meters in length, this vessel is the biggest ship sailing under German flag ever. At the same time, she is paving the way into a more sustainable future for Hapag-Lloyd, being the first of 12 ordered dual-fuel ships running on LNG (Liquified Natural Gas). We will await our flagship for her first port call in Hamburg on October 2, where she will be christened by the First Lady, Elke Büdenbender, wife of the German Federal President, Frank Walter Steinmeier.”

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