vendredi 3 février 2012

Tanger Med Port Project - Economic Challenges

With about 200 vessels passing through its waters every day, the strait is one of the world’s busiest commercial shipping routes: an estimated 25 per cent of the world’s containerised cargo passes along the north Moroccan coast.

The Port of Tanger Med, which celebrated its one year anniversary in July, has already surpassed Britain's Felixstowe with container volumes reaching 3.5 million TEUs. Within seven years, though, the port is expected to handle 8.5 million TEUs annually, not far from Europe's biggest port--Rotterdam. 

The port is well positioned considering that one-third of the world's containerized traffic passes through the Mediterranean already. In addition, the port has plans for tax-free zones and incentives to attract manufacturing facilities to the area. 

Tangier marks the meeting point of two continents, sitting at the western end of the narrow Strait of Gibraltar, which divides Africa from Europe.

In 2008, ports around the Mediterranean handled 24 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs), but most of it passed through the docks of France, Spain and Italy. Morocco now wants to carve out a larger share of regional trans-shipment trade for itself.

The London-based think tank ,Oxford Business Group (OBG), highlighted on Tuesday the importance of the ambitious Tanger Med II Port expansion project which aspires to position the kingdom at the centre of Mediterranean and international trade.