Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 03/05/2013 -- BMI forecasts throughput at the premier Bahraini maritime facility, the Khalifa bin Salman Port (KBSP), to exceed real GDP growth in 2013. We forecast box throughput growth of 6.6% and total tonnage growth of 7.4%, compared to our Country Risk team's projection of a 3.2% economic expansion over the year. This follows an estimated growth of 3.0% in 2012. In air freight we forecast a return to growth after four years of declines in volumes.
Headline Industry Data
- Growth at the port of Khalifa bin Salman (KBSP) in terms of total tonnage throughput is forecast at 7.4% in 2013, with average annual growth forecast at 6.4% between 2013 and 2017.
- Growth in Bahrain International Airport tonnage handling forecast at 2.9% in 2013, with average annual growth of 1.4% over our forecast period.
- Real growth in total trade forecast at 9.0% in 2013 and to average 5.2% over the medium term.
Key Industry Trends
Logistics Companies See Past Traffic Jams To Bahrain's Potential: Just as in 2011, 2012 saw instances of traffic jams in Bahrain cause delays to logistics companies. In September it was reported that several companies in Bahrain might risk losing major contracts due to delays faced by truckers at the King Fahad Causeway into Saudi Arabia. Problems with clearing agents and customs officials along with the shortage of space have been blamed for the delays, which have reportedly been going on for months. An example of the tendency to congestion occurred overnight on September 6 when more than 250 trucks were waiting to cross the border, according to Tariq Transport's Managing Director Tariq Al Wardi. Nevertheless, logistics companies continue to see potential in the Bahraini market.
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New 'Seabridge' Offers Hope For KBSP: BMI believes that a new strategy to be implemented by the Khalifa bin Salman Port (KBSP) in Bahrain could help the facility begin to realise its transhipment aims. A new 'seabridge' feeder service to connect the port with the Saudi Arabian port city of Jubail could offer upside risk to our throughput forecasts over the medium term.
Gulf Air To Transport Cargo For F1 Grand Prix: Bahrain's state-owned air freight carrier Gulf Air was set to transport more than 15,000kg of cargo for the F1 teams participating in the Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix, according to Gulf Air senior manager Rory Black. The carrier had pledged that the cargo, comprising parts as well as marketing material, would be transported safely and in time for the event, which will took place in April.
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