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Dubai opens first remote-controlled terminal

Dubai, January 28, 2014

The first remote-controlled electronic container terminal, an $850 million facility which boasts of a four million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent unit) capacity, was launched at the Jebel Ali port in Dubai.

The hitech terminal was inaugurated by Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

With this launch, the capacity of the three terminals at the port has risen to 19 million containers, the report added.

The 19 highly sophisticated automated quay cranes and 50 automated rail mounted gantry (RMG) yard cranes will help the T3 turn at least 30 per cent more carbon efficient than a conventional terminal operation, said a statement from DP World.

Importantly, automation will transform the workplace at the port, creating around 1,000 skilled jobs, it stated.

And with the cranes operated from a purpose-built operations building set apart from the quayside using remote control technology, the work has attracted highly skilled – and diverse – people.

According to DP World officials, about 30 per cent of the new quay crane operators who have been recruited are Emiratis, and of those, a third are women.

The figure is even higher in case of RMG operators where 70 per cent of the recruits are UAE nationals. Out of this, about 70 per cent are Emirati women, they added.

Sheikh Mohammed talked to some of the new female recruits on their new roles and also viewed the operation of new remote-controlled Terminal. He was accompanied by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,Deputy Ruler of Dubai.

DP World officials led by the chairman Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group CEO Mohammed Sharaf,  Senior VP and managing director, UAE Region Mohammed Al Muallem welcomed the delegation.

Ahmed Bin Sulayem said Jebel Ali was one of Dubai’s jewels and continues to lead the industry by pioneering large scale automation.

"And because it takes jobs from the quayside to the safety and security of the operations building, the work has proven attractive to Emirati nationals, including women, who, we are delighted to note, make up a significant number of our new T3 team," he noted.  

Ahmed Bin Sulayem said it was providing job opportunities to even those with special needs, with consoles and equipment in the operations room designed for wheelchair access.

Majid Bin Thaniah, the vice chairman, DP World, said: Jebel Ali was the model for its global portfolio of more than 65 marine terminals across six continents including the new developments we have underway in Europe, Africa, India and the Middle East.

"The unrivalled efficiency and connectivity of Jebel Ali, plus the adjacent free zone, home to around 7000 companies, has been and continues to be a driver of growth for the economy not just of Dubai and the UAE but for the wider region of some two billion people from the subcontinent to East Africa," he remarked.

Mohammed Sharaf pointed out that the automation and new technology were the way of the future and would help the customers and the wider supply chain realise the efficiencies on land that the new mega-ships generate at sea.

"They are a giant leap forward in terms of customer service. They will also make a significant difference as we gear up for Expo 2020, with tried and tested infrastructure that will support the preparation for this important event," he added.

Al Muallem said with the expansion of Terminal 2 last year and the opening of T3 this year, DP World will be able to handle ten of the largest vessels afloat simultaneously – the only port in the region able to do so.

"With the forthcoming connection of Etihad Rail to Jebel Ali, the port will be part of a multi-modal supply chain that seamlessly links sea-road-rail and air through the Dubai Logistics Corridor, reinforcing our position as the premier gateway for the region. Planning for the long term is something we have always done and will continue for the benefit of future generations,” he stated. 

Later one of the women crane operators gave Sheikh Mohammed a live demonstration of a remotely controlled quay crane.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Dubai | remote control | Container terminal |

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