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Dubai shipper plans major expansion of UAE facilities

Dubai’s only listed crude shipper has announced plans for a major expansion of facilities in the northern Emirates including a new ship building and repair yard.

Gulf Navigation said in a statement that it is starting studies for the expansion, known as the GNH Northern Project.

The plan will include ship building, ship repair and offshore platforms, equipment and services, logistics, marine specialised operations and global mobile ship repair.

The expansion comes as Gulf Navigation considers the eastern coast of the UAE as one of the most important trade routes in the world with at least 200 work boats employed for offshore support and supply. 

The company said the number of monthly vessels calls for repair at Fujairah anchorage and Khorfakkan totals about 550 ships, adding that it intends to tap this potential.

Gulf Navigation Group will be cooperating with Wuchang Shipbuilding Industry Group Co Ltd and Qingdao Beihai Shipbuilding Heavy Industry Co Ltd, both members of China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) group, in the GNH Northern Project. 

The consortium has started to review and finalise the plan which will be developed in three phases, the statement said.

The first phase of the project will include development and upgrade of capacity of existing facilities and a floating dock and will also include the development of specialised mobile cranes working remotely for all types of ships and offshore platforms.

Khamis Juma Buamim, GNH’s managing director and group CEO, said: “We are working on creating partnerships as part of GNH’s global expansion and development strategy and to establish ourselves are market leaders in all areas of the maritime sector and to diversify sources of our income and create value for our shareholders.”

He said the GNH Northern Project will create job opportunities and strengthen the economy of the region and the UAE.

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