Abu Dhabi’s Khalifa Port commenced commercial operations on 1 September.

Together with the neighbouring Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (Kizad), the port has been designed to be one of the most advanced trading hubs in the Middle East.

The US’ Bechtel was responsible for project management of the port and industrial zone for the client, Abu Dhabi Ports Company (ADPC).

A consortium of Geneva-registered Archirodon Construction, Boskalis Westminster Middle East of the Netherlands and Hyundai Engineering & Construction was awarded the $1.5bn contract for the port’s marine works in 2007.

A series of infrastructure contracts then followed in 2010. South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction won an estimated $390m package, Athens-based Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) secured an estimated $132m deal, and a joint venture of Germany’s Ed Zueblin and the local Al-Jaber Group won an estimated AED1bn ($273m)contract.

Khalifa Port can handle 2.5 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) a year. This is more than three times the amount of containers that the existing Mina Zayed Port in Abu Dhabi handled last year.