Qatar launches new ‘blockade-busting’ maritimes routes

The Gaza Post | The News of Palestine – Qatar

Qatar is Launching 3 direct maritime routes, in a move that will further enable Doha to circumvent a blockade by its neighbors.

Doha will operate three new shipping routes with Malaysia, Pakistan and Taiwan in September. The routes will operate through Doha’s flagship Hamad port, which is currently operating at 70 percent capacity, according to Qatar’s Minister of transport, Jassim bin Saif Al Sulaiti.

The minister was speaking at a ceremony for the signing of an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) between Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and Distribution Company (Muntajat), the marketing branch of Qatar Petroleum, and the Qatar Ports Management Company (Mwani Qatar) to benefit from Hamad Port services.

Under the agreement, Muntajat will export via Hamad Port to its final destinations around the world, while Mwani Qatar will be in charge of providing the shipping and unloading services for Muntajat containers from Hamad Port quays.

The agreement will give Muntajat access to directly ship to its 2,000 clients in more than 135 countries. The agreement will launch direct shipping from Hamad Port to Shanghai in China, Mundra and Nhava Sheva ports in India, Sahar and Salalah ports in Oman, and Derince port in Turkey.

The announcement coincided Milaha, a Qatari shipping company, stating that that it has launched independent storage and logistics services in Oman’s Sahar port, likely to bypass the Jebel Ali hub in the UAE, which is one of the countries blockading Qatar.

In a move seen as defying the sea blockade of the country, Qatar’s Hamad Port was linked directly to Mundra and Nhava Sheva ports in India,In June.

During the recent events, Qatar has been looking to break the blockade imposed on it by Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, blocking several of Qatar’s usual land and maritime freight routes. Flights have also been affected by its Gulf neighbours refusing to let Qatar carriers use their airspace.

Doha has established direct shipping routes with Oman and has sought alternative suppliers of foodstuffs and goods from nations such as Turkey and Iran.

The Qatari authorities reassured its citizens and residents that they can survive the blockade without significant damage to the economy and daily life.

international human rights groups criticized and condemned the blockade for its potential effect on ordinary citizens.

The three countries and their allies beyond the Gulf region stopped dealing with Doha in early June.

They ostensibly claim Doha supports “terrorist groups” – which later Doha vehemently denied

Source: The New Arab

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