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Pre Arrival:  Docs | ISPS | Restrictions
Berthing Ops:  Tugs
Cargo:  Tankers
Pollution:  Ballast
Local Info:  Time | Holidays | Notices
General Information for United Arab Emirates
Geo-political:
Capital City: Abu Dhabi.
Nationality: (noun) Emirati, (adjective) Emirati.
Population: 4,798,491.
Communications:
International Direct Dial Code: 971.
Number of Internal Airports: 24.
Major Languages Spoken: Arabic (official), Persian, English, Hindi, Urdu.
Economy:
Currency: 1 UAE Dirham (AED) of 100 Fils.
Main Industries: Petroleum and petrochemicals, fishing, aluminium, cement, fertilisers, commercial ship repair, construction materials, some boat building, handicrafts and textiles.
Environment:
Territorial Sea: 12 n.m.
Other Maritime Claims: Contiguous Zone: 24 n.m. Continental Shelf: 200 n.m. or to the edge of the continental margin. Exclusive Economic Zone: 200 n.m.
Coastline Extent: 1,318 km.
Climate: Desert; cooler in eastern mountains.
Natural Resources: Petroleum and natural gas.
Natural Hazards: Frequent sand and dust storms.
Terrain: Flat, barren coastal plain merging into rolling sand dunes of vast desert wasteland; mountains in east.
Average Temperatures: 
Month High Low
January 24° C 12° C
June 36° C 25° C
September 35° C 24° C
DOCUMENTS:  Ship Inspections:  Vessels calling at ports in Dubai will undergo state inspections conducted by Trakhees Ports, Environment, Health and Safety Division.
Trakhees Ports, Environment, Health and Safety Division. Tel: +971 (4) 804 0307. Fax: +971 (4) 881 7023. ehs@trakhees.ae www.ehss.ae/
Business Hours: 0730–1530 hrs. Sunday to Thursday.
ISPS COMPLIANCE:  Abu Dhabi ports are ISPS compliant and all vessels shall carry required certificates.
RESTRICTIONS:  Vessels registered in the following countries are banned from UAE ports, anchorage areas, territorial waters and economic zone unless they carry valid Classification Certificates, issued by the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS): Albania, Belize, Bolivia, Cambodia, Comoro Islands, Georgia, Honduras, Maldives, Mauritius, and Saint Vincent & the Grenadines.
Such measures have been imposed as part of the country's efforts to prevent maritime pollution.
Any vessels registered in a country covered by the ban, and presently operating under a navigation licence issued by the Maritime Affairs Division of the Ministry of Communications, and under contract to the government of the United Arab Emirates, shall be entitled to continue to operate until the expiry of their contracts with relevant authorities; however, such contracts will not be renewed after their expiry.
The IACS members are: American Bureau of Shipping, Bureau Veritas, China Classification Society, Det Norske Veritas, Germanischer Lloyd, Korean Register, Lloyd's Register, Nippon Kaiji Kyokai, Registro Italiano Navale and Russian Maritime Register.
Maqta Gateway: 
Vessel Registration and Update Request:  Vessels should register and provide the required information through the Maqta Gateway www.pcs.maqta.ae Once vessel is registered, the Harbour Master will review and confirm acceptance to the customer. If refused, the Harbour Master will advise the customer and provide feedback and possibly further documents. Once accepted, the Agent will then be able to apply for a vessel call at Abu Dhabi's commercial ports.
Customers will be required to provide the following vessel documents at registration: 
   Class License
   Customs Documents
   Hull and Machinery Insurance
   ISSC
   Insurance Certificate
   International Load Line Certificate
   International Navigation License
   International Tonnage Certificate
   IOPP Certifcate
   NSD File
   P&I Insurance
   Q88 Form
   Registry Certificate
   Ship's Particulars
   Ship Security Level
   Towage Certifcate
   UAE Navigation License.
Vessel Call Request (ADPORTS-02):  Customer submits their application through Maqta Gateway 48 hours before the arrival of a registered vessel that meets international and local regulations. Application is reviewed by the VTS. Response will be forwarded and, if the request is approved, the customer shall be notified with the permission of vessel entry as scheduled. In the event of refusal, the customer will have access to feedback and notes from the VTS and can provide additional documents and information if necessary.
Documents Required: 
   Advance Notification Form (waste delivery)
   Agent Change Letter
   CICPA Inspection
   Crew List
   Customs/Immigration Clearance
   Dangerous Goods Manifest
   Dangerous Goods Summary
   Diplomatic Clearance (for Navy Vessels)
   Discharging Plan
   Loading Plan
   Master Uniform Report
   Passenger List
   Pre-Arrival Notification
   Pre-Arrival Security Information
   Q88 Form
   ROPME (ballast water reporting form)
   Tug and Tow Safety Checklist.
Vessel Berthing Request (ADPORTS-03):  Customer submits the request specifying the purpose of the visit to assign the appropriate berth. The request is received by the terminal operators who provide a response. If approved, the customer will be notified with the confirmation of the berth booking for the vessel as scheduled. In the event of refusal, the customer shall have access to the feedback of the terminal operators and shall provide them with additional documents and information if necessary. No documents required for this stage.
Marine Service Request (ADPORTS-04):  Customer submits the requests which are then received by the VTS. The response will be received from the VTS. If approved the customer will be notified of the possibility of obtaining the required service (each separately) as scheduled. In the event of refusal, the customer has to consult the feedback from the VTS and provide them with additional documents and information if necessary. No documents required.
Vessel Post-Berthing Service Request (ADPORTS-05):  Customer submits the request which is then received by the VTS. The response will be received from the VTS or the terminal operators. If approved, client will be notified of the possibility of obtaining the required service (each separately) as scheduled. In case of refusal, customer should consult the feedback from the concerned department and provide them with additional documents, information and clarifications if necessary. Document required is a Marine Permit to Work Application (if applicable).
Vessel Shifting Request (ADPORTS-06):  Customer submits the request mentioning the purpose of the shift, details of the new location, and the timing of the shift.
The application will be received by the terminal operators or VTS (according to the nature of the shift request). Response will be received from the concerned department. If approved, the customer will be notified with the confirmation of the new location of the vessel as scheduled. In the event of refusal, the customer shall have access to the feedback from the concerned department and shall provide them with additional information if necessary. No documents required.
Vessel Departure Request (ADPORTS-07):  Customer submits the application on completion of all operational activities in the port, provide clearance of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs and Customs.
The application shall be received by the relevant departments. A response is received by each department separately. If approved, the customer shall be notified of the no-objection of the departure of the vessel. In the event of refusal, the customer shall have access to the notes from the concerned department and provide them with additional documents, information and clarifications, if necessary. If the approval is granted, customer will receive the port clearance certificate. Documents Required are Customs and Immigration Clearances.
Track and Trace Information Request (ADPORTS-56):  Registered customer to request information on existing vessel or cargo (e.g., vessel location, cargo details) either in Maqta Gateway (Information Services) or via Manara Mobile Application. The customer has the option to also configure/subscribe to receive timely notifications upon event occurrence or status change.
The system provides the information for the user in the format requested. No documents required.
Cargo Handling:  Vessels and other customers also submit requests to handle cargo through the Maqta Gateway.
Also see Notices
TUGS:  Abu Dhabi:  16 tugs 27–71 tonnes BP cover the ports of the Emirate.
Name Bollard Pull Propulsion
(tonnes)
Abu Dhabi-1 50 ASD control pitch
Al Ain 50 ASD control pitch
Al Aryaf Fixed propeller
Al Durrah 52.7 ASD fixed pitch
Al Fenci 52.7 ASD fixed pitch
Al Hazm-1 75 ASD control pitch
Al Hili-1 32 ASD fixed pitch
Al Maqtaa 52.7 ASD fixed pitch
Al Marfaa 27 VSP tractor
Al Maryah-1 71 ASD
Al Qattara 75 ASD control pitch
Al Shaheed 30 ASD fixed pitch
Al Shahamah CPP
Das 1 71 ASD
Ghayathi 28 Conventional
Jimi1 32 ASD fixed pitch
Operator:  T: +971 (2) 695 2000. F: +971 (2) 695 2177. customerservice@adports.ae www.safeen.ae
TANKER FACILITIES:  Reference to ministerial resolution No. (73) 2017 and with immediate effect: Foreign flagged ships carrying crude oil and products in the UAE ports, territorial waters and in the exclusive economic zone (excluding ships with navigation licences issued by the Federal Transport Authority (FTA)) must fulfil the following conditions to carry out load/discharge operations:
  1. ship is less than 25 years old from date of delivery
  2. classed by Classification Society member in the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) or emirates classification society (TASNEEF)
  3. double hulled
  4. constructed or adapted primarily to carry crude oil and products in bulk.
BALLAST:  ROPME Sea Area (RSA) Ballast Water Management:  In light of the Ballast Water Management Convention that replaced the voluntary guidelines and considering the specific provisions of the Convention, it is desired to take the necessary steps to mitigate the risk of introduction of harmful species and also to harmonise national and regional policies to address the issue of ballast water in the RSA.
The RSA is defined as extending between the following geographic positions:
  • 16° 39′ 00″ N, 053° 03′ 30″ E
  • 16° 00′ 00″ N, 053° 25′ 00″ E
  • 17° 00′ 00″ N, 056° 30′ 00″ E
  • 20° 30′ 00″ N, 060° 00′ 00″ E
  • 25° 04′ 00″ N, 061° 25′ 00″ E.
The area is the largest recipient of ship's ballast water. Annually, more than 50,000 vessels visit this area and discharge a large amount of ballast water. The RSA is a semi-enclosed water body with intensely hot summers and short cool winters, extensive air and water temperature fluctuation and relatively high salinity. It is also characterised by high turbidity and low exchange of water with open waters. Therefore, there is also a need to manage and control the spread of harmful aquatic species in ship's ballast water by implementing a set of measures such as ballast water exchange outside the RSA.
With effect from 1 November 2009, all ships, regardless of flag, will be required to exchange and treat all ballast water taken up outside the RSA for the Protection of the Marine Environment.
This comprises the states of Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Taking into consideration the provisions of the Regulation B-4 of the Ballast Water Management Convention, the following points should be observed.
  1. Vessels arriving from outside the RSA should undertake ballast water exchange en route over 200 n.m. from the nearest land and in water at least depth 200 m.
  2. If not possible for safety reasons, vessel should be expected to make minor deviations to areas within the 200 n.m. limit that can be identified as discharge area, so long as such areas are more than 50 n.m. from the nearest land in waters at least depth 200 m.
  3. If not achievable, ship shall provide the respective authority with the reason why it has not done so, and further ballast water management measures may be required, consistent with the Ballast Water Management Convention and other international laws.
Ballast water, that has been treated with a ballast water treatment system approved in accordance with IMO standards, does not need to be exchanged.
Ships will be required to have on board an approved Ballast Water Management Plan in accordance with the IMO standards. Ships should also have and maintain a Ballast Water Record Book.
From the date specified above, all ships passing Strait of Hormuz will be required to complete the Regional Ballast Water Reporting Form (RBWRF). The ships will be inspected by the Port State Control Officers to ensure these regional requirements are fully implemented.
For further assistance contact the local Agent, respective Port Authority or MEMAC as the Regional Centre at memac@batelco.com.bh at the earliest opportunity.
TIME:  GMT plus 4 hours.
LOCAL HOLIDAYS:  New Years Day; 24 April 1 (Israa & Miaraj Night); 27 May 1 (Ramadan expected to begin); 25 June 1 (Eid Al Fitr); 23 August 1 (Hajj); 31 August 1 (Arafat Day); 1 September 1 (Eid Al Adha); 22 September 1 (Hijri New Year's Day); 30 November (Martyr's Day); 30 November 1 (Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday); 2/3 December (UAE National Day).
1 Islamic holiday exact dates are subject to moon sighting and may differ from date given.
NOTICES:  Vessel Classification Society Requirements: 
Ministry of Communications Decision No.  23
Ref. No. DPA/169/07/01
Dubai Port Authority (DPA) has received instructions from the Ministry of Communications regarding vessels registered in the following countries: Albania, Belize, Bolivia, Cambodia, Comoros, Georgia, Grenadines, Honduras, Maldives, Mauritius and St. Vincent.
Cabinet Decision No. 23 – 2001 prohibits vessels flying the above flags from entering UAE ports, waiting at anchor or sailing in territorial waters unless they carry a valid Classification Certificate issued by any of the following members of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS):
  • American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), USA
  • Bureau Veritas (BV), France
  • Chinese Register of Shipping (CCS), China
  • Det Norske Veritas (DNV), Norway
  • Germanischer Lloyd (GL), Germany
  • Korean Register of Shipping (KR), Korea
  • Lloyds Register of Shipping (LR), UK
  • Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (NKK), Japan
  • Register Italiana Naval (RINA), Italy
  • Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RS), Russia.
Any vessels contravening this law will be detained by the Harbour Master and, accordingly, information will be passed to Port State Control for further necessary action.
Furthermore, DPA wishes to state that the Ministry's decision is in affiliation with DPA's Circular dated 01.07.2001, Ref. DPA/165/06/01, ``Rejection/Detention of Sub-Standard Ships'' which remains applicable (Not reproduced).
Source: Dubai Ports Authority Notice Ref. DPA/169/07/01.