Commercial Harbor to be shifted to industrial island

Maldives Ports Limited (MPL) will begin work to relocate Male' Commercial Harbor to industrial island, Thilafushi within the year.

The relocation would effectively address the current challenges of limited space and resources faced by the main port. CEO of MPL, Shahid Ali said while the upgrades brought to the port in 2011 allowed for the port to cater up to 147 containers of 20ft, the increased amount of cargo import has exponentially increased the number of containers to 325. The large increase poses several problems to the efficiently managing the port, pointed out Shahid, as it delays the time taken to clear the cargo from the port.

The current plan of action includes the repair of problematic equipment, and repairing the roads used by the heavy vehicles. The port will also be rearranged in a bid to maximize space.

The commercial harbor is not sustainable in the long run to cater to the demands required of the port, therefore, it has been decided at the government's policy level that the harbor will be shifted to Thilafushi island in the near future, revealed Shahid.

Five or six heavy equipment used for cargo clearance are currently nonoperational due to technical issues. Six new equipment brought by MPL are also not in use due to lack of adequate space. If the current issues are solved, cargo can be cleared within a week, said Shahid.