MOGADISHU PORT : THE NEW FACE OF SOMALIA SHIPPING INDUSTRY

Aerial view of the Port of Mogadishu, Somalia. Three cargo ships, large, medium and small sized vessels are moored to the docks. A tugboat is heading out of the port.
Mogadishu’s port, having recently modernized to facilitate the shipping of containers, has made it much easier for the country to ship larger quantities of goods in and out of its port facilities. The use of containers at Mogadishu’s port, as opposed to off loading items individually, has dramatically increased the amount of goods that can be imported and exported to Somalia.

The Port of Mogadishu, also known as the Mogadishu International Port,is the official seaport of Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia. Classified as a major class port, it is the largest harbour in the country.




Since Roman centuries existed a commercial port called Sarapion in what is now modern Mogadishu. However during the Middle Ages the port of Mogasdishu was very small and only with the arrival of the Italians in 1890 were made the first improvements in order to create a modern port. Since then the port has increased in capacity until now when it is the most important port of Somalia and one of the biggest in eastern Africa.


The port of Mogadishu was created as a modern port (called in Italian Porto di Mogadiscio) with magazines and docks in the late 1920s by the Italian government of Italian Somalia.




In 1930 a protective dike with breakwaters was made in front of the enlarged port, that was connected to the Somalia interior by a railway and even by a new "imperial road" (from Mogasdishu to Addis Abeba). After incurring some damage during the civil war, the Federal Government of Somalia launched the Mogadishu Port Rehabilitation Project, an initiative to rebuild, develop and modernize the Port of Mogadishu.


The renovations include the installation of Alpha Logistics technology.


A joint international delegation consisting of the Director of the Port of Djibouti and Chinese officials specializing in infrastructure reconstruction concurrently visited the facility in June 2013.


According to Mogadishu Port manager Abdullahi Ali Nur, the delegates along with local Somali officials received reports on the port’s functions as part of the rebuilding project’s planning stages. In November 2014, Minister of Transportation Said Jama Mohamed launched a new transportation reform initiative at the Port of Mogadishu.




The minister met with local transportation union officials to discuss how to optimize the new system’s implementation, ensure its transparency and accountability, and gauge their requirements and those of the owners of transported goods that they represent.


According to Mohamed, the project’s ultimate goal is to establish a fair transportation system. He also stressed that transport owners should make sure that their vehicles are in good condition and attain the standards of goods owners.


In 2013, the Port of Mogadishu’s management reportedly reached an agreement with representatives of the Dubai-based company Simatech Shipping LLC to handle vital operations at the seaport.


Under the name Mogadishu Port Container Terminal, the firm is slated to handle all of the port’s technical and operational functions. In October 2013, the federal Cabinet endorsed an agreement with the Turkish firm Al-Bayrak to manage the Port of Mogadishu for a 20-year period.


According to the Prime Minister’s Office, the deal was secured by the Ministry of Ports and Public Works, and also assigns Al-Bayrak responsibility for rebuilding and modernizing the port.


Al-Bayrak had previously overseen construction of the Istanbul Metro in Istanbul.


In April 2014, the Federal Parliament postponed finalization of the Seaport Management Deal pending the approval of a new foreign investment bill. The MPs also requested that the agreement be submitted to the legislature for deliberation and to ensure that the interests of the port’s manual labourers are taken into account.


In September 2014, the federal government officially delegated management of the Mogadishu Port to Al-Bayrak.


The Turkish company’s indicated that under the terms of the agreement, 55 per cent of revenue generated at the seaport will go to the government and the remaining 45 per cent is earmarked for the firm.


According to Minister for Transports and Seaport Yussuf Maalim Amin, the management transfer is expected to double the federal authorities’ income from the Port.


Al-Bayrak’s modernization project will cost $80 million.




According to Al-Bayrak, the majority of its revenue share will be re-invested in the seaport through additional port-based trade and new docks, construction materials and machinery.


The company also plans to install an environment wall and a closed circuit camera system in accordance with international security protocols, erect a modern port administration building, and clean the ship entrance channels via underwater surveillance.


As of September 2014, the first phase of the renovations are reportedly complete, with the second phase underway.


During its first month of operation under Al-Bayrak, the port generated $2.7 million in service revenue.


Towards the Year 2014, A Dubai registered Shipping Line Company advanced its expansion to Mogadishu port and in 2015, African Shipping Line -Kenya managed to make registration and presence as Ship Liner Agents in the Port of Mogadishu.


African Shipping Line -Mogadishu being a representative of Kenya-based company African Shipping Line- Kenya to provide services related to Ship Liner Agency as well as Container Logistics Operation at the Mogadishu port, Somalia.


Africa Shipping Line Now Runs a Container Feeder Service Between Mombasa (Kenya), Mogadishu (Somalia) fortnight service.