The 150-year-old dream of the Ottoman Sultan, Sultan Abdulhamid II, came true. Filyos Port started its activities. It is anticipated that the port will strengthen Turkey’s dominance in the blue homeland and will act as the “gateway to the north” of the country’s trade.
With its geographical advantage, the port in Filyos town of Çaycuma district of Zonguldak has started to serve as a key stop in the Black Sea trade and making a great contribution to the regional economy.
Northern gate of Turkish trade
Zonguldak Bulent Ecevit University Maritime Faculty Research Assistant Dr. Umur Bucak says, “Filyos Port, with its high capacity, will be the northern gate of Turkey’s trade.”
At this point, Bucak pointed out that it is necessary to analyze the competitors of Filyos Port in the Black Sea in order to attract international cargo and ships to the port, and drew attention to the fact that Russia’s Novorossiysk, Romania’s Constanta and Ukraine’s Odessa ports stand out.
Features of Black Sea ports
Bucak explained that the Novorossiysk Port, which has a coastline of 8.3 kilometers, handles 900 thousand TEU containers per year, out of a total load of approximately 142 million tons, at 89 berths with water depths varying between 8-15.6 meters.
Emphasizing that the Port of Constanta has a total of 24 berths, of which 10 are for dry cargo, 4 for liquid cargo, 2 for vehicles, and 8 for heavy and large cargo, Bucak said, He informed that 700 thousand TEU containers were handled within a total load of approximately 67 million tons.
Bucak said that Odessa Port, which has a 9-kilometer coastline, has an annual handling capacity of 46 million tons at 54 docks with a water depth of 8.8-11.7 meters, and that approximately 650 thousand TEU containers are handled annually at the port.
In an important position compared to its competitors
Emphasizing that Filyos Port has a very important position compared to its competitors, Bucak continued as follows:
“The Bosphorus Strait has 3 times more intense ship traffic than the Suez Canal and 4 times that of the Panama Canal. In order to be located at a much shorter distance from the Bosphorus, which is the narrow passage with the highest ship traffic in the world compared to its competitors, and for ships to call in Filyos Port draws attention in various services such as fuel supply, maintenance and repair. Thus, an important opportunity will arise for suppliers and maintenance and repair facilities in our country.”
“Turkish Petroleum’s projects at the port should be supported”
Emphasizing that the oil exploration and extraction projects carried out by the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) in the port area should be supported, Bucak made the following assessments:
“The establishment of an integrated pipeline at Filyos Port, which can also be considered as the northern leg of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline Project, will bring a significant competitive advantage to the port. In recent years, as a result of the investments within the scope of the Belt and Road Initiative in container transportation in the Black Sea, linear linear Samsun Port has achieved an increase of approximately 67 percent in container handling in 2020. For this reason, the railway integration projects of Filyos Port, which is planned as a container terminal on one side, should be insisted on at the point of accessibility.”
Filyos will also be preferred in container transportation
Stating that with the railway integration projects that can be carried out on the north-south axis of the country, a direct connection of Filyos Port with Mersin, Iskenderun or Antalya ports can be established, Bucak said, “Any project connecting Filyos Port and the Mediterranean will be beneficial for both Russia’s maritime transport with China and It can also enable us to get a share of its trade with Mediterranean countries. Thus, while the traffic in the Bosphorus is relieved, transportation times can be shortened.”
He emphasized that Filyos Port will be a preferred port for container transportation, especially considering the increase in container mobility in the Black Sea.
It will reduce the traffic load of the straits
Zonguldak Bülent Ecevit University (ZBEÜ) Filyos Workshop Organizing Committee President Prof. Dr. Hamza Çeştepe said that Filyos Port, which will connect the countries in the Black Sea basin to Turkey with the intermodal network, will also contribute to easing the traffic load of the straits.
Çeştepe stated that Filyos Port, which has the advantage of land, air and railway transportation network by sea, will contribute to easing the traffic load of the straits by connecting the countries in the Black Sea basin to Turkey with the intermodal network.
He said that Filyos Port has significant advantages over other ports in the Black Sea region, especially when compared to Trabzon and Samsun ports.