- First Dry Bulk Terminals Group (DBTG) conference in region is a resounding success
- Delegates from over forty international dry bulk terminals participate in DBTG
- Conference held as global bulk-carrier market conditions continue to strengthen
Over three days in Ras Al Khaimah, senior leaders from the world’s dry bulk terminal industry met to discuss recent advances in bulk cargo handling technology, as well as the latest news, trends, and environmental, health and safety developments for 2022 and beyond. The hybrid event was held from 6-8 October in the conference facilities at the Doubletree by Hilton resort on Ras Al Khaimah’s Marjan Island, with most speakers appearing live and some streamed online from their home countries.
Hosted by RAK Ports and organised by Dry Bulk Terminals Group (DBTG), a globally operating not-for-profit industry association, the venue for the conference pays testament to the phenomenal growth of Saqr Port, a part of RAK Ports group, as the largest bulk port in the Middle East and, with 100 million tonnes annual capacity, today one of the largest and most advanced dry bulk ports in the world. Supported by rebounding economic and industrial activity, seaborne dry bulk trade is projected to grow by over 4% globally in 2021, to reach over 5.39 billion tonnes for the full year.
Roger Clasquin, RAK Ports Chief Executive Officer, said: ‘We are delighted to be able to welcome so many leaders from this global industry to Ras Al Khaimah. RAK Ports continues to be a key driver in the economic growth of the emirate and acts as a gateway hub for the rest of the UAE. It is a pleasure to be able to showcase our expertise in dry bulk to such a distinguished international audience.”
The conference programme covered a broad range of topics across technical, safety, operational, and supply chain issues. Sustainability was a core theme for discussion and the delegates reviewed how the world’s dry bulk ports are actively working to reduce CO2 emissions and to mitigate other forms of environmental impact, using a range of new technologies.
Speaking at the conference, Paul Goris, Executive Director of DBTG, said: “The Middle East region plays a critical role in the dry bulk terminals ecosystem, as a prime export hub for construction raw materials, phosphates, and fertilisers. We are delighted to be here in Ras Al Khaimah and to be able to experience at first hand some of the significant opportunities this region has to offer.”
Members of RAK Ports senior management team gave delegates a behind-the-scenes tour of the world-class dry bulk handling facilities at Saqr Port, which can service the world’s largest bulk carriers. They witnessed first-hand how recent investments of US$ 250 million and the latest German technology, enable up to 11,000 tonnes of dry bulk to be loaded across the port’s deep-water berths every hour. Conference participants also visited Stevin Rock quarry; dined at the fabulous Waldorf Astoria Hotel; and even found time to visit Jebel Jais, the highest peak in the UAE, to experience the world’s longest zipline.