Iraq is studying plans to build a dry port in Basra that will support operations at the proposed Great Faw port.

The dry port will be able to hold cargo that comes into Great Faw before it is loaded onto trains and transported to Europe through Turkey.

While the dry port is in the planning stage, some international companies are advising the Iraqi authorities on what the port should comprise, Saleh Aboud, the director general at the Iraqi Port Authority tells MEED.

Iraq is also planning to build a 100-kilometre railway between Great Faw and Basra port so that cargo can be more easily transported between the two ports. The authorities will also upgrade the existing single-lane road that currently links the two ports to a double-lane road to avoid congestion.

The estimated $6bn Great Faw port is being designed by a consortium led by Italy’s Impregilo. The design process is expected to take about 15 months.

Iraq is also planning to build four more berths at Umm Qasr port container terminal.

Sharjah-based port operator Gulftainer, Australia’s APL shipping line and France’s CMA CGM are among those already operating berths at Umm Qasr.

Gulftainer is currently renovating berth 8 at Umm Qasr and expects to start operations in the next few months. Earlier in April, Gulftainer was also awarded a concession to operate two more berths at the port (MEED 18:4:10).

Iraq is inviting local and international companies to submit bids by 3 May for a contract to manage and operate a new container terminal at Umm Qasr port.