The Saudi Ports Authority was created in 1976 as an independent body under the Prime Minister with the mission of developing and improving all of the country’s ports. Before that, different bodies with different rules managed Saudi Arabia’s ports. In short order, the Saudi Ports Authority eliminated port congestion problems and re-organized and improved the efficiency of the country’s ports.
Saudi Arabia is the world’s major oil exporting country, and it boasts the biggest and most diverse economy in the Middle East. As much as 95 percent of Saudi Arabia’s exports (excluding crude oil) and imports move through seaports like the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu. In 1997, the Saudi Ports Authority began to give the private sector responsibility for managing, operating, and maintaining the ports. Today, the private sector runs the ports, including King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu, and the Saudi Ports Authority supervises them.
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu is the largest port on the Red Sea for the export of crude oil, refined petroleum products, and petrochemicals. Built to support the Yanbu Industrial Complex, the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu also exports construction materials and equipment.
In 2008, the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu handled a total of 35.9 million tons of cargo, including 4.7 million tons of imports and 31.2 million tons of exports. Of the total, 35.5 million tons was liquid bulk cargo (excluding crude oil). The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu also handled solid bulk cargo (272 thousand tons, 62% of which was exported), containers (62.9 thousand tons, of which almost all was exported) in 3694 TEUs, and general cargo of 36.1 thousand tons (all of which was imported).
Within the total of 35.9 million tons of cargo, 27.6 million tons was exported refined products. Other exports included liquefied gas (2 million tons), petrochemicals (1.6 million tons), industrial products (34 thousand tons), and foodstuffs (10 thousand tons). Imports included general cargo (4.5 million tons), foodstuffs (126.8 thousand tons), and construction materials (36.1 thousand tons).
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu is capable of handling all kinds of tankers, and cargo vessels, including those that carry bulk and roll-on/roll-off cargoes and containers. The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu also offers ample support vessels for pilotage and towing as well as complete mooring services, including stevedoring.
The General Cargo and Container Terminal in the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu contains seven berths on a 1420-meter long wharf. Three berths are dredged to a depth of 14 meters. Two of those berths handle containers, and one of them handles roll-on/roll-off cargo. The berths are each equipped with 40-ton capacity cranes and other equipment. This terminal handles exports from the Yanbu industrial complex and imports for construction activities that include heavy-lift equipment and production-supporting materials.
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu’s Bulk Terminal, now handling primarily sulfur, has a 500-meter long wharf with two dry bulk berths with alongside depth of 15.5 meters. The terminal can accommodate vessels to 60 thousand DWT.
The Crude Oil Terminal at the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu has a trestle jetty with four loading berths with alongside depth of 32 meters that can accommodate vessels up to 500 thousand DWT.
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu’s Petroleum Derivatives Export Terminal, or Export Refinery, has three berths with alongside depth of 18.5 meters. Accommodating vessels to 150 thousand DWT, this terminal was constructed for the export of petroleum derivatives like benzene, diesel, and oils.
The Petrochemicals Terminal at the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu has two berths with alongside depth of 13.5 meters that can accommodate vessels to 40 thousand DWT. These berths handle exports of liquid petrochemical products like propylene and glycol.
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu’s Natural Gas Terminal has two berths with alongside depth of 18.3 meters that can accommodate vessels to 150 thousand DWT. The terminal handles natural gas products like propane, butane, and naphtha.
The Local Refinery Terminal at the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu is dredged to 16 meters and used for local export and distribution of petroleum derivatives. It can handle vessels to 80 thousand DWT.
The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu has ample storage facilities. An area of 167.1 thousand square meters supports container storage, and the reefer container area has 40 power points for reefer containers. The King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu also offers 10 thousand square meters for storing general cargo and 800 square meters for hazardous cargo. In addition, there are 18 thousand square meters of covered warehouses at the King Fahad Industrial Port in Yanbu.