Saudi Arabia, the Arab world’s largest economy, is focused on diversifying its economy away from oil as part of its Vision 2030 program. The kingdom is forecast to be a vital driver of global trade growth. Its exports are projected to expand at an average annual rate of more than 7 percent to $354 billion by 2030, Standard Chartered said earlier this year. “The strategic Vision 2030 framework includes the development of a prosperous and sustainable maritime transportation ecosystem that supports the Kingdom’s socio-economic ambitions and consolidates its status as a global logistics hub,” said Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO of DP World. The Jeddah Islamic Port, which is strategically located on the Red Sea, has historically played a pivotal role in facilitating the movement of trade between the East and the West.

Logistics Park at the Jeddah Islamic Port

Further strengthening the deep ties shared between the UAE and Saudi Arabia, DP World and Saudi Ports Authority (Mawani) have signed a 30-year agreement to build a state-of-the-art, port-centric logistics park at the Jeddah Islamic Port. An investment value of more than Dh490 million ($133.4 million) aims to establish a 415,000 sq. m logistics park with an in-land container depot capacity of 250,000 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) and a warehousing storage space of 100,000 sq. m.
The Authority’s move to develop a holistic logistics park will enhance the competitiveness of the Jeddah Islamic Port. The park will boost Jeddah Islamic Port in terms of:

  • Re-export activities
  • Help to reduce the time and cost of logistics for importers and exporters
  • Provide an integrated service platform linking port operations with last-mile activities.
  • Enable to offer processing, consolidation /deconsolidation, labeling, and fulfillment
  • Offer temperature-controlled storage for cargo
  • Advanced and eco-friendly e-services by integrating the operations of the South Container Terminal with the new logistics park.
  • Help raise the quantity of trans-shipped goods

DP World Managing the South Container Terminal

In April 2020, DP World signed a new concession agreement with Mawani to continue operating and managing the South Container Terminal at the Jeddah Islamic Port for 30 years. DP World has committed to investing more than Dh2.94 billion to expand and modernize the terminal. The overhaul project will take place over four phases and be completed by 2024.
The project will involve:

  • New infrastructure upgrades
  • Broadening of draft depth and quay
  • Installation of advanced equipment and technologies
  • Automation and digitalization programs
  • Decarbonization initiatives

The revamped terminal is projected to increase Jeddah Islamic Port’s container handling capacity from the current 2.5 million TEUs to 4 million TEUs. This will enhance Jeddah Islamic Port’s status as a major trade and logistics center on the Red Sea coast.

Metals and minerals, plastic and rubber, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals will dominate the kingdom’s exports over the next decade, with India, China, and South Korea being the principal export markets.

DP World makes inroads across the world

DP World is one of the world’s biggest operators of marine ports and inland cargo terminals, with gateways from London and Antwerp and hubs in Africa, India, Russia, and the Americas. The Dubai-based company has been on an acquisition spree as it attempts to become a more diversified and integrated logistics company. In the recent past, they have signed agreements with the Angolan government to develop the country’s trade and logistics sector and acquired South Africa’s Imperial Logistics to strengthen the port operator’s position in Africa.
The agreement to build a “port-centric park” at the Jeddah Islamic Port was signed under the patronage of Eng. Saleh bin Nasser Al Jasser, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Transport and Logistic Services and Chairman of Mawani. The logistics park will expand DP World’s regional footprint and bring multi-modal logistics solutions to the nation. DP world being an end-to-end supply chain provider, will help build logistical services that will bridge the existing market gaps. This port-centric logistic park will empower to provide the best-in-class logistical services by collaborating with leading service providers.
“This partnership will connect the port’s operations to the new logistics park to offer end-to-end logistics services with high efficiency,” Omar Hariri, president of the Saudi Ports Authority, said.


The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is all set to become the region’s leading logistics hub. With the Kingdom’s vision for 2030, to strengthen its local and foreign investments in the economy, global logistics giants like Maersk and Aramex have reportedly invested in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

On November 1, the global container carrier AP Moller Maersk announced its investment of $136 million to build an integrated logistics park at the Jeddah Islamic Port. In the same month, Aramex, the Dubai-based multinational logistics, courier, and package delivery provider, inaugurated Aramex Go’s new shipping platform for Saudi entrepreneurs.

The Burgeoning Saudi Market

The Kingdom has been heavily investing in new ports, airports, and enhanced infrastructure to boost its logistics sector and shift from an oil-based economy by 2030.

The Jeddah Islamic Port is said to have an investment of over $132 million. Strategically located on the Red Sea, the Jeddah Islamic Port links the East and West. The port is also the largest in Saudi Arabia and the second largest in the GCC for volume and cargo handling capacity.

The Saudi market’s attraction lives in its robust recovery from the COVID-19 induced global recession. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Kingdom has a projected economic growth of 2.8% in 2021. This spurt in growth rate is largely driven by rising oil prices and investments from its sovereign wealth fund.

NEOM – The Futuristic City

Under the name of NEOM, a futuristic city, is all set to host multiple projects to leverage the Kingdom’s strategy to become a mega logistics hub.

In 2017, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Bin Salman, announced the launch of NEOM’s industrial city. The futuristic city of NEOM is located in Tabuk Province, in the northwestern region of the Kingdom.

He has also announced the launch of Oxagon, the industrial city set to be the largest floating industrial complex globally. It will also have one of the world’s most technologically advanced logistics hub.

The hub is located near the Suez Canal on the Red Sea, extending Saudi’s footprint over 13% of the total global trade movement passing through the Red Sea.


Saudi Arabia’s former minister for Economy and Planning, Mohammed Al Tuwaijri, has been nominated for the position of Director General at the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Mohammed Al Tuwaijri had been the head of risk management at Saudi British Bank before becoming the Managing Director and CEO of JP Morgan Saudi Arabia, after which he moved on to serve as the Group Managing Director, Deputy Chairman, and CEO of HSBC Bank Middle East and North Africa.

He was the kingdom’s minister of economy and planning from 2016, before being relieved in March. As a minister, Al Tuwaijri oversaw sweeping changes the economy initiated as part of Vision 2030, which has set a target of raising the private sector’s contribution to the GDP of 65 percent from its current 40 percent.

In an interview with Al Arabiya at this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Al Tuwaijri stressed the importance of the non-oil sector in securing growth. The race is on to lead the World Trade Organization out of the worst crisis that it has faced in its 25 years of existence. “We care to increase the local content and provide jobs when looking into the economic growth, and this is one of the main objectives of Vision 2030, from the privatization program to the industry program,” he stated.

Responsibilities endowed

The newly appointed leader will be entrusted with the task of rebuilding the trust and credibility of the organization, rebooting its deadlocked negotiating agenda, and restoring its paralyzed dispute settlement system keeping in mind the worldwide recession, the pandemic strike, the US-China battle for trade supremacy, an American election season, and also against Brexit’s threats to add instability in the economic relationship between the UK and the European Union.


CSS’s top management team met with Etisalat for the initial discussions to implement the Etisalat Video Surveillance as a Solution (VSAAS) along with a Smart Messaging Platform. Etisalat Video Surveillance as a Solution provides business enterprises with value-added services that address their security and regulatory compliance requirements.

Enabled by the state-of-the-art onsite video surveillance technology that will be deployed at CSS, Etisalat can proactively use, manage, troubleshoot, and support this solution. Hamad Mohammed Al Marzooqi, VP of Etisalat Managed SMB, Khalid M Yateem, Director of Etisalat Managed SMB and Jithesh Vijakumar, Sales Manager, Etisalat attended the meeting, along with the CSS team, which included Chandrakala, Krishna Kaladharan, Susanth Shekar, Pothen Thomas, and Arun Snehajan. A visit to the Innovation Center has also been scheduled for the near future.

The first-of-its-kind video surveillance solution in the UAE, this one-stop solution, is for all our video surveillance needs. From end-to-end managed services, security surveillance with analytics, web and mobile access, business intelligence and upgradable cloud storage, other features include end to end managed services, heat maps, people counting, a security system, and a queuing management solution.

Enabling this solution at the CSS office premises will help us manage our business more efficiently while increasing our business productivity. This partnership resounds with Etisalat’s tagline, which says, ‘Your business grows with us.’ Enabling this solution will increase the safety and security of our premises, resources, and assets and allow us to optimize our operations.


With the recent addition of Faisal R as the Co-Director of CSS Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Lighthouse editorial team sat down to gain insight into his past experience, opinions and more.
By Minaal Pervaiz

How did you first get involved in the Shipping, Liner and Logistics industry?
I have been involved in the field for quite a long time. I grew up in close contact to everything shipping related and became more interested when I began to consider my further studies.

Tell us how you joined the CSS KSA branch. Why did you want this job?
I joined CSS KSA because of my interest and experience with [the CSS Group]. I knew that with the knowledge I acquired whilst pursuing my career, plus the experience I have accumulated throughout the years, it would be my next best step.

With your recent addition as a Co-Director (working alongside Britto Satheesh) of CSS KSA, what does this mean for the portfolio you will be managing?
We will be taking CSS KSA further, representing a big challenge that I am looking forward to.

How would you handle failure?
I can best describe how I see failure through the words from Thomas A Edison: “I have not failed. I have found 10,000 ways it will not work.” These words have followed me since my upbringing and are something that best describe our way of working in the logistics world.

What do you enjoy most about working at CSS KSA?
I am excited – it is a good opportunity to work with people from all over the world and share ideas to constantly bring innovation within the company.

What do you think the current state of affairs are in the industry and possible predictions?
The current state of affairs is positive because of the 2020 and 2030 vision. Also, business will be improving because of all these new projects across Saudi Arabia right now.

What motivates YOU?
An ambition to grow and make an impact in the industry. Legacy and the passing of knowledge are factors of motivation in my everyday life, and are my driving forces to always want to become bigger and better at what I do.

World’s Largest Shipyard To Be Built In Saudi Arabia

HaskoningDHV UK and Hyundai Engineering & Construction have been selected to perform the Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) for the infrastructure of a new maritime yard in Ras Al-Khair in Saudi Arabia.

The maritime yard will comprise a separate shipyard facility for large shipbuilding, large ship repair, offshore rigs fabrication, and offshore support vessel repair. As planned, this facility will become the largest maritime yard in the world providing a range of services. It will be located north of Jubail on the Arabian Gulf. Royal HaskoningDHV’s specialist shipyard consultancy experience combined with Hyundai E&C’s track record in Engineering-Procurement-Construction (EPC) projects will provide comprehensive technical knowledge for all elements of the shipyard’s design.

Adrian Arnold, project director at Royal HaskoningDHV said: “Maritime yards must be globally competitive with facilities which are cost-effective, operationally flexible, and durable. This project combines four different yards into a single development, creating significant opportunities for economies of scale and enhancing the country’s economic development.”

The maritime yard will have an impressive range of facilities including seven fully-equipped dry docks, two basins and five piers, a shiplift system, workshops, warehouses, utility services areas, as well as office buildings, living quarters, and recreational facilities for more than 10,000 workers.

Royal HaskoningDHV undertook the initial market study for the maritime yard in 2014. The FEED development work is now scheduled to take five months.

Phoenix International Visit CSS Group In Saudi Arabia And UAE

Phoenix International, Francois Wolberg, Business Development Manager, Global Textile Logistics and Brandon Joiner, Sales Executive (Atlanta) traveled to CSS Saudi Arabia and CSS UAE offices last November to visit the newly appointed partners, CSS Group in the Middle East.

The first stop was in Riyadh where they spent three days with Ramzi Al-Dulijan (Managing Director, CSS Saudi Arabia) and his team. Together they visited important customers that Phoenix handles in their Atlanta branch. “We found that CSS Saudi Arabia is a dynamic team and willing to help and support our activity,” added Brandon Joiner, Sales Executive (Atlanta).

The second stop was CSS headquarters in Dubai, where they met with CSS delegation including Ken Dinnadge (VP, Business Development, CSS), Roshmon Manoli, Route Development Manager, North America and Kaveen Amarasinghe,  Sales Executive.

Brandon, Francois and the entire CSS team visited several customers in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and had an opportunity to develop sales and learnt the art of collaborating and sharing information in order to close new deals.

“Globally we have been very impressed by CSS, and we feel we have a great partner to work with out of countries such as UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman,” added Francois Wolberg, Business Development Manager, Global Textile Logistics

Vital Statistics At Phoenix International

    • Founded in 1979
    • Headquartered in Wood Dale, Illinois (Chicago)
    • 2,000 employees
    • One of the Top Work Places1
    • One of the Healthiest Companies in America2
    • Top 30 Best Places to Work3
    • 42nd largest privately held company4
    • 19th largest air export forwarder in North America5
    • 24th largest freight forwarder6
    • Fiscal Year End: June 30th
    • Fiscal 2011 Revenue: $1 Billion
    • Ocean Freight Volume: 250,000 TEUs
    • Air Freight Volume: 41,000 Tons
    • Average Growth: 15-20%
    • Global network of more than 300 locations in 125 countries
    •     USA – 23
    •     Pacific Rim – 25
    •     South Asia – 12
    •     Europe – 11
    •     Oceania – 1
    •     Exclusive Agent Network – 225