Arab Today, arab today red seanegev rail may spur china trade
Last Updated : GMT 14:18:49
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Red Sea-Negev rail may spur China trade

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Red Sea-Negev rail may spur China trade

Tel Aviv - Arabstoday

Israel is planning a train link between its Red Sea and Mediterranean ports intended to serve as an overland alternative to the Suez Canal and to spur increased trade from China, India and other Asian countries. The cabinet approved on Feb. 5 a 350-kilometer (218-mile) line to link the city of Eilat, Israel’s sole Asian-waters port, to the existing rail system, connecting to the Ashdod port. The project may start as early as this year. To Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the link is a means to increase trade with the expanding economies of Asia, reducing dependence on Israel’s traditional export markets in Europe and the U.S. and transforming Israel into a Middle East trading hub. The premier says having an overland cargo route to the Mediterranean will boost the country’s value as a strategic partner to China and India and would be “useful” in case “problems” arose with the Suez Canal. “How can we get the great Asian economies interested?” Netanyahu asked during an interview with Bloomberg News in Tel Aviv on Feb. 20. “We can build a train line from the Red Sea to Ashdod to link Asia and Europe.” The project “will help open up markets.” Israeli officials in recent discussions with Chinese and Indian counterparts have raised the possibility of companies from there taking part in building and operating the estimated 8.6 billion shekel ($2.3 billion) project, expected by the government to take five years once construction gets under way. Chemical Exports The government estimates the rail link will multiply cargo traffic at the Eilat port, which primarily handles chemical exports to, and merchandise imports from, Asian markets. According to a Ministry of Transport study, chemical exports from Eilat that totaled 2.4 million tons in 2008 may rise to as much as 5.4 million tons in 2020. Shipping containers could increase from 2,000 20-foot containers, or TEU, to 210,000 TEU. The government is selling the port to private owners and expects to complete the process this year. Five companies -- Maman Cargo Terminals and Handling Ltd., Gadot Chemicals Tankers and Terminals Ltd. (GDTN), Papo Maritime Ltd., Mifalei Tovala Ltd. and Gold Bond Group Ltd. (GOLD) -- have reached an advanced stage in the sale, the Finance Ministry announced on Feb. 21. In two months, after the government works out provisions to safeguard the interests of port workers, the contenders can submit bids. Mifalei Tovala is a subsidiary of publicly traded Israel Chemicals Ltd. (ICL), which extracts minerals from the Dead Sea to make potash and fertilizers. Acquiring the port may help it contain labor actions and other contingencies that have sometimes delayed its exports to Asia, said Joseph Wolf, an equity analyst at Barclays Capital in Tel Aviv. Sustaining Edge “One of Israel Chemicals’ biggest advantages over their rivals is their time-to-market shipping to India and China,” Wolf said in a phone interview. “Controlling transportation and making sure that edge is sustained is an important part of their strategy.” Israel Chemicals shares are down 0.8 percent this year in Tel Aviv; Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc., the world’s largest fertilizer producer by market value, is up 5.8 percent in New York trading over the same period. Linking Eilat by rail to Ashdod, along a route used in ancient times by caravans bringing spices and incense from Arabia and India to Europe, has been contemplated for decades. It was first promoted by Netanyahu while he was finance minister in 2003. He revived the idea after becoming prime minister in 2009 as part of a nationwide rail development program. Southern Negev For Israel, the link isn’t just an economic investment. Netanyahu has stressed its importance in spurring development of the country’s southern Negev desert and possibly strengthening relations with Jordan. Its Aqaba port sits adjacent to Eilat and could also be connected to a Mediterranean rail link. “There is no reason it can’t be an Eilat-Aqaba-Ashdod line,” Netanyahu told parliament last March. “This will advance prosperity, stability and peace in the region.” The total amount of cargo loaded and unloaded at Eilat in the first three quarters of 2011 was 1.6 million tons. At Ashdod it was 14.4 million tons, according to Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics. Those amounts pale next to the Suez Canal, used to carry about 8 percent of global annual seaborne trade. In January alone, 81.5 million net tons passed through the Egypt-controlled waterway. The canal has remained open during the past year of political upheaval, which forced the resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. It was closed for four months in 1956- 1957 as Egypt and Israel fought the Sinai War. It shut again for eight years after the 1967 War as Egyptian and Israeli forces occasionally fired at each other from positions on either bank. ‘Second Option’ “It’s always important in terms of risk management to have a second option,” said Philip Damas, director of liner shipping at Drewry Shipping Consultant Ltd. in London. “In terms of cost, between having the cargo delivered by rail to a Mediterranean port of Israel, as compared to having it go all the way by ship, I’m a little skeptical of it being competitive.” The Ministry of Transportation has issued a non-binding “Request for Information” packet outlining the project. Last year more than 80 interested bodies, including Siemens AG (SIE), Alstom SA (ALO), Samsung Engineering Co Ltd. (028050) and Veolia Transportation Inc., asked for it, the ministry said. “It is important for China and India to have another route of connection for their exports to Europe in addition to the Suez Canal,” Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz told Bloomberg News during a visit to Beijing on Feb. 29. ‘Extra Insurance’ The Eilat-Ashdod port link will be “extra insurance” for Asian exporters in uncertain times and during periods of crowding in the Suez Canal, Steinitz said, adding that initial discussions have started with Chinese officials on possible participation in the project. The China Civil Engineering Construction Corp. (BCALAZ) is already involved in building another rail line in Israel to connect the cities of Haifa and Karmiel. India is interested in participating in the building of the link, said an official at the Ministry of External Affairs who declined to allow his name to be used as is standard practice in his ministry. Discussions have taken place, he said. “Once this project is formed and the road map is clear, Indian companies will evaluate their participation, but I do see good Indian interest in this,” Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath told The Hindu Daily on Feb. 14, after discussing it with Trade Minister Israel Katz during a visit to Israel. In addition to boosting Israel’s economic and strategic standing, the link will be “useful in case there are queues or lines or other problems with the sea route of the Suez Canal,” Netanyahu said in a Jerusalem speech on Feb. 19. “We will connect Eilat to Ashdod and Eilat to Tel Aviv and this changes Israel.”

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today red seanegev rail may spur china trade Arab Today, arab today red seanegev rail may spur china trade

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Prepares to present her new collection

GMT 14:29 2017 Monday ,20 February

Prepares to present her new collection
Arab Today, arab today Tourism shows signs of recovery

GMT 09:59 2017 Monday ,20 February

Tourism shows signs of recovery
Arab Today, arab today Sarah Belamesh designs antiques of "ceramic"

GMT 19:45 2017 Monday ,20 February

Sarah Belamesh designs antiques of "ceramic"
Arab Today, arab today 11 family members dead in rebel push

GMT 07:57 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

11 family members dead in rebel push
Arab Today, arab today To probe sexual harassment claims

GMT 10:08 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

To probe sexual harassment claims

GMT 14:57 2017 Monday ,20 February

A giant initial public offering on track

GMT 14:50 2017 Monday ,20 February

Energy Market Research

GMT 09:38 2017 Monday ,20 February

Japan returns to trade deficit in January

GMT 07:16 2017 Monday ,20 February

Global arms trade highest since Cold War

GMT 06:10 2017 Monday ,20 February

Tourism shows signs of recovery in Egypt

GMT 05:45 2017 Monday ,20 February

Brexit U-turn ruled out by many in EU
View News in Arabic - Business: نفط وبتروكيماويات
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Kidogo provides childcare for underserved

GMT 20:24 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Kidogo provides childcare for underserved
Arab Today, arab today 63-Year-Old Woman Delivers Baby

GMT 12:35 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

63-Year-Old Woman Delivers Baby
Arab Today, arab today London to tax old cars

GMT 14:06 2017 Friday ,17 February

London to tax old cars
Arab Today, arab today Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons
Arab Today, arab today Nissan enhances sales in most markets

GMT 14:08 2017 Monday ,20 February

Nissan enhances sales in most markets
Arab Today, arab today Competes Sweden and Germans by S90

GMT 22:36 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Competes Sweden and Germans by S90
Arab Today, arab today Ahmed Fahmy stresses he did not ignore singing

GMT 06:34 2017 Sunday ,19 February

Ahmed Fahmy stresses he did not ignore singing
Arab Today, arab today Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 20:41 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 21:11 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival

GMT 06:50 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed

GMT 19:10 2017 Friday ,17 February

Hats, scarves add beauty to women

GMT 10:26 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

Emergency UN meeting in Harare

GMT 23:29 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Home built on sand castles-style costs $8m

GMT 14:51 2017 Monday ,20 February

Ways to acquire presentation skills

GMT 19:16 2017 Friday ,17 February

Aziz House ready to host the tourists

GMT 13:12 2015 Saturday ,09 May

Sheikh Sultan opens Sharjah Centre

GMT 12:39 2017 Monday ,20 February

newest smartphone another winner for Huawei

GMT 13:16 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

First fashion model with Down syndrome
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday