The Port of Aden is situated between the promontories of Aden
(Jebel Shamsan, 553 m) and Little Aden (Jebel Muzalqam, 374 m) and is protected
from the NE and SW monsoons by these hills and along the northern boundary by
land, enabling it to operate without restriction all year. The harbour covers an
area some 8 nm east-west and 3 nm north-south.
The port consists of the outer harbour, providing anchorage areas, the oil
harbour at Little Aden on the west side of the harbour, and the inner harbour to
the east. These harbours are reached by a channel from the entrance mid-way
between the promontories. The outer section of the channel has a depth of 16.0
m. From the bifurcation point, a channel heading north west to the Little Aden
oil harbour has a depth of 14.7 m, leading to four berths for oil tankers at
depths of between 11.6 and 15.8 m, alongside LPG and dry cargo berths, and a
RoRo berth, all at a depth of11.0 meters.
The channel to the inner harbour, leading north east from the bifurcation point,
has a least depth of 15.0 m. The inner harbour has 9 alongside berths, plus 6
buoy and 3 bunkering (dolphin) berths with depths between 5.5 and 11.9 m. On the
north side of the inner harbour, the Aden Container Terminal (ACT) provides 700
meters of quay, depth alongside 16.0 meters (completed in March 1999). Off the
ACT is a turning area, depth 15.0 m, diameter 700 m. At the eastern end of the
inner harbour, a short channel of depth 11.0 m leads to the Ma'alla Terminal,
with 4 contaisner/general/bulk berths of total length 750 m, depth 11.0 m., and a
RoRo berth depth 7.6 m. At the eastern end of this terminal is the Home Trade
Quay, 250 m long, depth 6.7 m . The inner harbour also contains a fishing
harbour and a ship repair yard with two floating docks.
The inner harbour is protected by a short breakwater at Ras Marbut, where the
harbour control tower is situated. The Harbour Master's office is in the tower.
50,000 tone capacity bulk silos and a flour milling plant have been constructed
at Ma'alla (1999).
Structural Port Essentials
Productive Port Essentials