Aqaba Container Terminal (ACT), the preferred gateway for the Levant region and beyond, has been recently nominated as a finalist for the coveted Lloyd’s List South Asia, Middle East and Africa “Port Operator” Award. Focused on infrastructural upgrades to enhance operational efficiency, maintaining and building relationships with stakeholders, and positively impacting the community through socio-economic development, ACT has been recognized for its efforts and tangible achievements over the years.
ACT’s unconditional support to the export industry did not go unnoticed by the panel of maritime experts of Lloyd’s List. Indeed, ACT came to the rescue of the Jordanian exporters whose cargo was historically transported by road to neighboring countries and abruptly found no access to their markets anymore after the closing of the Syrian border in April 2015. Without notice, ACT opened the maritime route to this export cargo, handling a massive 46% increase in export volumes in the middle of the import season. The full year 2015 closed with a 28% increase in export volumes and 2016 delivered another record with a further 7% increase in export full containers.
ACT’s success is essentially a result of the passionate dedication of its 1,064 full-time employees. Reflecting a commitment to support local Jordanian employment, the terminal’s workforce shows 99.5% nationalization for the fourth consecutive year. 31% of the employees are below 30 years old and the company welcomes female employees who bring much-needed diversity to the workforce. Employees receive an average salary per worker that is 2.3 times higher than the national average of the workers of the private sector in Jordan. Safety remains ACT’s priority number one. As such, ACT conducted 14,248 training hours (13 hours per employee) in 2016, reaching 100% of employees and contractors trained in health and safety procedures. The continuous drive for occupational work and safety improvement delivers strong results with an 18% improvement in lost time injury frequency of its workforce.
Moved by a genuine concern for the community, ACT has invested JOD 710,000 into diverse CSR projects and initiatives over the past five years, with 924 volunteers pledging 7,000 hours of work in 2016 alone. ACT’s CSR programs targeted to the local community varies between initiatives implemented individually such as “Ekfal Taleb”, through which the company distributes materials essential to educational success to underprivileged family’s students in cooperation with the Aqaba governorate’s Directorate of Education, by ensuring that each student receives enough supplies for the entire school year, covering more than 600 student in 18 different schools each year, and “Ahl El Khair” initiative, where ACT distributes food packages to families in need prior to the beginning of Ramadan, or initiatives carried out in cooperation with civil society institutions and concerned parties.