Maersk Line honours Middle East customers
Maersk Line hosted its annual felicitation ceremony in Dubai last month to honour its customers in the United Arab Emirates.
The event, which took place at the Grand Hyatt hotel, attracted a number of high-level representatives from local shipping companies, freight forwarders, port operators and trading companies. Amongst the winners were Dubai Aluminium Company as top shipper, Jelem Shipping Service as top importer, Safeline Freight Forwarding as top exporter, and RAK Global Logistics as top forwarder.
"Maersk Line experienced a period of growth in 2007, in terms of imports, exports and throughput, which is thanks to the support of customers and the cooperation of ports in the United Arab Emirates," commented Robert Uggla, managing director of Maersk UAE, during his opening speech.
"We now serve all seven emirates in this country and continue to invest in infrastructure and capacity in many destination markets to continue providing our customers with the best transportation solutions," he added.
During the evening, Uggla noted the UAE's emergence as a regional gateway and suggested the Middle East would face a number of challenges before it could truly capitalise on future market opportunities, including transportation infrastructure and space allocated for African traders to conduct their operations.
"The industrial sector in the region has a tendency to underestimate the capacity and infrastructure bottlenecks that we will be facing in the future when their production levels go through the roof," he stated. "Additional vessels, coupled with port developments and souring bunker prices, come at a cost.
In 2007, shipping lines pulled out significant capacity from the Transpacific due to unprofitable rate levels. Let's make sure we avoid the same situation on the Middle Eastern trades by keeping rates at a healthy level, so Maersk Line has an incentive to act as long-term investor and service provider in this market."
Maersk Line in the UAE is partnered with the Kanoo Group and currently has five offices. The head office is located in Dubai, with branch offices in Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. In addition, a documentation office is located in Jebel Ali Free Zone, together with a representative office in Fujairah.