The Jubail Commercial Port (also spelled Jubayl) lies on the eastern central coast of Saudi Arabia on the Arabian Gulf about 14 kilometers southeast of the King Fahd Industrial Port in Jubail. For information about the history of, cruising and travel in the city of Jubail, and US Department of State information for US travelers, please refer to the World Port Source article for the King Fahd Industrial Port.
In 1976, the Saudi Ports Authority was created as an independent body with the mission of developing and improving all of the country’s ports. Before that, different bodies with different rules managed the individual Saudi Arabia’s ports. The Saudi Ports Authority quickly eliminated congestion problems and later re-organized the ports and improved their efficiency.
The Jubail Commercial Port covers about 44 square kilometers, making it one of the biggest man-made ports in the world on reclaimed land. The location was selected due to its naturally deep adjacent waters on the Arabian Gulf.
In 2008, the Jubail Commercial Port handled a total of 4.2 million tons of cargo, including 2.5 million tons of imports and 1.7 million tons of exports. Within that total, 1.9 million tons was solid bulk, 1.3 million tons was general cargo, 982.1 thousand tons was containerized cargo (in 75.6 thousand TEUs), and 18.7 thousand tons was liquid bulk (excluding crude oil).
The break-down of cargo categories for the Jubail Commercial Port was “other” cargo (1.1 million tons), petrochemicals (924.3 thousand tons), food and foodstuffs (829.5 thousand tons), construction materials (601.4 thousand tons), industrial products (491.6 thousand tons), refined products (223.2 thousand tons), and empty containers (469 tons).
Before becoming the modern port, the Jubail Commercial Port was a fishing harbor. Jubail Commercial Port was created to support ocean-going import and export trade in Saudi Arabia’s eastern province. It is located near production centers and a large planned industrial zone. The Jubail Commercial Port was opened by King Khalid ibn Abdulaziz Al-Saud in 1976, and facility construction was completed in 1979.
The Jubail Commercial Port also helped reduce the cargo traffic experienced by King Abdul Aziz Port in Al-Dammam and helped increase employment opportunities for Saudi workers. It plays an important role in the export of fishing-related products produced by the companies in the Jubail industrial zone, and it will be an integral part of the forthcoming Jubail 2 industrial area. The Saudi Ports Authority expects the Jubail Commercial Port’s area of influence to expand significantly when the railroad connecting Jubail Commercial Port to Riyadh and interior Saudi Arabia is completed.
The Jubail Commercial Port contains 3780 meters of wharves with 16 berths ranging from 12 to 14 meters in depth. Berths 1 to 8 are 212.5 meters long with alongside depth of 12 meters on a facing basin that is 300 meters wide. These berths can accommodate vessels with drafts from 10.8 to 11.4 (at high tide) meters. Berths 9 and 10 in the Jubail Commercial Port are 300 meters long with alongside depth of 14 meters on a facing basin 450 meters wide. They can accommodate vessels with drafts from 12.6 to 13.3 (at high tide) meters. Berths 11 through 16 are 250 meters long with alongside depth of 14 meters on a 300-meter-wide facing basin that can accommodate vessels from 12.6 to 13.3 (at high tide) meters.
Of the 16 berths in the Jubail Commercial Port, five are dedicated to general cargo and two specialize in bulk grains. Two berths are dedicated to marine crafts, and three berths are provided for visiting ships. Four berths (three for general cargo and one for bulk cargo) are reserved for peak activity periods or as needed. Jubail Commercial Port also has two berths in shallow waters that are 440 meters long and two berths in the fishing harbor that are 320 meters long.
The Jubail Commercial Port berths have a total capacity for 7.78 million tons of cargo. The general cargo berths have capacity to handle 2.8 million tons of cargo. The container and roll-on/roll-off berths can handle 1.86 million tons of cargo. The bulk grain berths and berths for other bulk cargo have capacity for 1.56 million tons. The Jubail Commercial Port is fully-equipped with mobile cranes, fork lifts, trucks and trailers, lighting towers, and hoppers and crabs to handle any type of cargo.
The Jubail Commercial Port’s Container and Roll-on/Roll-off Cargo Station has two berths equipped with stern ramps 50 meters wide and quarter ramps 25 meters wide. The station covers a total of 135 thousand square meters and contains a 100 thousand square meter container storage yard with capacity for 14 thousand TEUs of containerized cargo and 120 plugs for reefer containers. The Jubail Commercial Port container freight station contains four sheds with a total area of 18 thousand square meters. The Jubail Commercial Port has an ample fleet of marine craft to support incoming and outgoing vessels in a prompt and efficient manner.
The Jubail Commercial Port also contains ample buildings and courtyards to serve the full range of cargoes and vessels. These facilities include an 1.8 thousand square meter internal warehouse for dangerous goods, two external storage warehouses covering a total of 18 thousand square meters, ten internal storage warehouses of a total 87 thousand square meters, internal open storage yards of 450 thousand square meters, and external open yards covering 900 thousand square meters.