Maersk has unveiled its ‘Al Maha’ ocean service, which will connect the Middle East and European markets.
The service will enable customers to plan out their supply chains "well in advance", as well as support exports from the connected countries, the shipping giant said.
The line will rotate between the pivotal ports across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Egypt and Morocco and will include seven vessels with a nominal capacity of 8,500TEUs per week.
The Al Maha service will offer further connections to European, Middle Eastern and Far Eastern markets for petrochemical exports out of Saudi Arabia.
Bhavan Vempati, Maersk’s head of regional ocean management, Indian Subcontinent, Middle East and Africa, said: “Over the last few years, reliable and predictable supply chains that cater to the evolving consumer behaviours have emerged as the backbone of global trade.
“Having carefully studied our customers’ requirements arising out of the current market dynamics, we have designed the Al Maha service that will help our customers in driving value from their supply chains.”
Petrochemical exports from Saudi Arabia have traditionally faced cost and capacity challenges through current ocean transportation options.
The Al Maha service looks to offset this by increasing loading flexibility from Saudi Eastern Province, enabling customers to reshuffle between Dammam and Jubail, offering greater capacity to cater for customers’ needs and with more reliable schedules allowing better planning of their supply chains.
Maersk said: “The UAE – West Africa market will also benefit from the enhanced capacity of the Al Maha service. With the expectation of higher schedule reliability and predictability from this service, customers will be able to plan their supply chains well in advance and, in return, serve their end-users better.”