Turkey announces cruise ports within Istanbul Canal project

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 14

By Rufiz Hafizoglu – Trend:

Two cruise ports will be built within the Istanbul Canal construction project, a source in the Turkish Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications told Trend March 14.

According to the source, the cruise ports will be built to increase Istanbul’s tourism potential.

The source has not specified the cost of the cruise ports construction project.

Earlier, it was reported that the Turkish Mass Housing Administration (TOKI) will build residential complexes along the Istanbul Canal, a waterway linking the Black and Marmara seas.

Presently, the work is underway to design a logistics center, which is planned to be built within the Istanbul Canal project.

The length of the Istanbul Canal will be 45 kilometers. Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed intention to implement the Istanbul Canal project in 2011.

The aim in constructing the Istanbul Canal is to reduce the load on the Bosphorus Strait, as well as to prevent the threat of ecological and man-made disasters on one of the world's most intense sea highways.

The depth and width of the Istanbul Canal will be 25 meters and 400 meters, respectively.

Presently, an average of 150 vessels pass through the Bosphorus daily, of which about 30 are oil tankers. Annually about 150 million tons of oil and oil products are transported through the Black Sea straits, while the capacity of the Bosphorus is estimated at 200 million tons.

The Istanbul Canal will run parallel to the Bosphorus and in fact will turn the European part of Istanbul into an island and separate it from Europe.

Tankers with a length not exceeding 275 meters, a width of 48 meters and a carrying capacity of 14,500 DWT will be allowed to operate in the Istanbul Canal, being constructed under the government's "Goal 2023" plan.

The construction of the Istanbul Canal will continue for five years, and its minimum lifetime will be 100 years.

(1 USD = 3.8629 TRY on March 14)

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Follow the author on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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