Key port information can also be found at: Website of the Maritime Database on Berbera Port
Berbera Port is on the Northern coast of Somalia and is located on the Gulf of Aden. The Port is owned and operated by the Somaliland authorities. In addition to an oil terminal the facilities can accommodate containers, general cargo, and bulk cargo.
The port foundation is traced back more than a hundred years, and the current place, a linear wharf of 300 meters, was established in 1968 by Soviet Union and expanded to a 350 meters linear wharf in 1984 by United States of America. Since then the port has developed numerous properties as well as constructions.
The Port's task hasn’t changed over the years but its scope of services has expanded considerably. The port contributed significantly in the development of the Somaliland community.
For more generic information on Berbera Port, please select the following document: Somaliland Berbera Port Additional Information
Note: The information provided in the attached documents, which has been taken from the old DLCA, does not match the structure of the new LCA and is therefore provided separately.
Port website: Website of the Berbera Port
Port Location and Contacts
Province or District
Town or City (Closest location) with Distance (km)
Name: Berbera (1 km) and Hargeisa (160 km)
Port's Complete Name
|10° 26' 00" N|
|45° 01' 00" E|
Managing Company or Port Authority (If more than one operator, break down by area of operation)
|Berbera Port Authority (Somaliland Government)|
Management Contact Person
Berbera port Manager:
Deputy Port Manager:
Closest Airport and Frequent Airlines to / from International Destinations
Berbera Airport (7 km) Hargeisa Airport (160 km)
Description and Contacts of Key Companies
|Berbera Port Authority (Somaliland Government)|
|Office Number||Mobile Number|
|Main Office||+252-2-740 198||+252-63-444 6123|
|Port Control||+252-2-740 333||+252-63-444 6157|
|Security Office||+252-2-740 444||+252-63-444 6191|
|PFSO||+252-2-740 733||+252-63-444 6154|
Entry into the harbour is straightforward except during the strong windy conditions that occur frequently during both the NE and SW monsoon periods. These winds tend to blow beam-on to vessels in the approach channel and at the commercial quays. With the lack of tug power to assist in maneuvering, ship safety is not optimal. In addition, a lack of effective navigation aids limits vessel entry and departure operations to daylight hours, from 6 am to 6 pm. The situation is occasionally aggravated by dust storms generated by strong winds that impair visibility.
Berbera Port – Seasonal Constraints
Yes / No
From <month> to <month>
July to Sept
Major Import Campaigns
Local Authorities, Humanitarian agencies, and commercial sector
Berbera Port – Performance (2012)
Container Traffic (TEUs)
Discharge Rates and Terminal Handling Charges
For information on Somalia Port Charges, please see the following document: Somalia Port Tarrifs
Berbera Port - Berthing Specifications
Type of Berth
Maximum Draft (m)
9 m at low tide, and 13 m at high tide
Available alongside quay through hoses. Rate: 15 – 20 tons per hour
Port of Berbera – Berthing Specifications
Type of Berth
9.5 m low tide
13 m high tide
General Cargo Handling Berths
Berbera Port – General Cargo Handling Performance
2,000 to 2,500 mt per ship/day
1,000 mt per ship/day
1,000 to 1,800 mt per ship/day
Approx. 6 containers per hour
Port Handling Equipment
- Doubling the current container handling from six to twelve moves per hour is well within the realm of possibility. Acquisition of more materials handling equipment in conjunction with more efficient procedures could drastically improve vessel turn around and reduce time in port. This opens up the port for increased vessel traffic and reduces shipping costs to Berbera.
- The main port equipment and facilities include the Mayara and Tamara lighthouses at the entry of the port.
- Cargo handling equipment (10 x mobile cranes (70 mt), 2 x forklifts of 32 mt).
- Storage warehouses: Total area 5,760 m² with storage capacity up to 120,000 mt, open storage (64,000 m²) is available plus a container storage yard.
- In 2014 Berbera Port Authority initiated a major plan to expand the dry port by compacting an area of 700 m x 300 m and placing asphalt in which will be handled for containers as an additional container terminal. The construction is still ongoing and so far the authority has managed to accomplish 300 m x 100 m out of the planned development. The plan is to complete the new terminal by the end of July 2016.
The port currently only accommodates 35,000 tons
- The expansion of the Port of Berbera could cost more than $65 million. Ali Omar Mohamed, in charge of the Port of Berbera, recently stated that he imagines the port becoming 20 meters (22 yards) deep compared to its current 11.5 to 12 meters depth. At 20 meters, the port could accommodate the world’s largest container ship, weighing 300,000 tons. The expansion of the port is very much a documented expectation for the future of Somaliland (see the National Development Plan 2012-2016), but attracting private investors into the port remains an ongoing process.
Berbera Port – Handling Equipment
10 – 70 mt
2.5 – 12 mt
The increased usage of containers has contributed to the improvement of Berbera Port efficiency in vessel turnaround and handling. There is a consistent positive trend in the number of containers handled: in 2012 the port handled 21,538 containers, an improvement of 22% from 2009. Maersk and PIL Lines signed an agreement with Port Authorities to operate a regular service to the Port of Berbera and are represented in Berbera and the capital Hargeisa.
Berbera Port – Container Handling
Container Facilities Available
Container Freight Station (CFS)
Refrigerated Container Stations
Daily Take Off Capacity (Containers per day)
Number of Reefer Stations (connection points)
Emergency Take-off Capacity (Give an indication)
Off take capacity of gang shift (in Containers per shift)
Maps from Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBP), which is an independent NGO working together with Somali authorities to support investors and donors for the development of Berbera Port, show that the port has recently emerged as an important and strategic logistics hub widely used by humanitarian agencies and industry alike.
Grain and Bulk Handling
Bulk Grain Operations: Silo construction was never completed. The silos are unusable when bulk grain is offloaded, it must be unloaded directly into trucks on the quay.
Bagging operations can be done on the quay side. There are no installed bagging facilities at the Ports of Berbera, Bossaso, Mogadishu or Kismayo.
Alternatively PortServ Company provides the services at the Ports when informed and contracted well in advance of a vessel arrival with Bulk Cereals.
PortServ provides direct bagging from ship discharge.
Main Storage Terminal
The Port of Berbera is owned and operated by the Somaliland Administration through an autonomous body called the Berbera Port Authority (BPA). The main port equipment and facilities include the Mayara and Tamara lighthouses at the entry of the port.
- Cargo handling equipment: 10 x mobile cranes (10 – 70 mt) and 2 x forklifts (32 mt).
- Storage warehouses (total area 5,760 m² with storage capacity up to 120,000 mt and open storage of 64,000 m² are available, plus a container storage area.
Stevedoring is the movement of cargo from the ship to the stock for imports and from the stick to ship in the case of export. For any stevedoring services performed the following charges shall be applied:
Berbera Port – Stevedoring Rates
Rate per ton or part thereof US$
Discharged or loading
Discharged or loading transhipment cargo
Cargo shipped and re-landed
Cargo landed & reshipped
Shifting within hatches
Shifting from hold to hold
Shifting on deck
On 8th August 2015 Berbera Port Authority issued a new tariffs of empty containers which was effective from 1st September 2015.
The increase of tariffs are $30 and $50 for 20 TEU and 40 FEU respectively.
In addition the authority has increased port handling charges for containerized cargo as below effective 1st Jan 2016:
- Cargo handling charges: port dues 2.5 per ton
- Container handling charges:
|Container||20 ft||40 ft|
Extension: there is a round of extension for Berbera port during the year 2015.
- Purpose: the purpose of extension at Berbera port is to use containerized cargo as Container terminal yard.
- International Agreement: There is no currently agencies deal with agreement for Berbera port.
- Local Agreement: There is no local agencies currently deal with for Berbera port.
There is an organized security system which requires a gate pass for people to move cargo out of the port. Trucks of various sizes are available for hire. In addition to this, there is a union transport which provides the trucks; around 4,000 trucks are registered with them. Truck capacities are from 10 mt to 30 mt, among these there are also old trucks which cannot go beyond the town. The Union of Truck owners is capable of providing enough trucks for transporting goods arriving or leaving the Port.
Berbera Port – Security
ISPS Compliant (Yes/No)
Current ISPS Level
Level 1 = Normal, Level 2 = Heightened, Level 3 = Exceptional