Ports

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Geographically, Curaçao is situated in the heart of the Caribbean basin, at the crossroads of major shipping routes. The accessibility of a business location is the most important factor of establishment and Curaçao has a lot to offer in that respect through its well-developed infrastructure.

Because of its historically good connections with Europe, the U.S.A., Latin America and the Caribbean islands, the ports of Curaçao have more than 1,300 sailings per year, more than 20 regularly calling shipping lines, and an efficient and reliable shipping agent network. Curaçao’s harbors are among the region's most developed and best-organized ports. The ports of Curaçao are all natural, sheltered ports that offer safe, fast, efficient and reliable handling of both ships and cargo. The ports of Curaçao are well equipped for all business activities. Curaçao is practically located outside the hurricane belt and has the perfect gateway to the Caribbean. The Port of Willemstad's strategic geographical location with respect to the United States, South America and Europe is one of the major factors that have contributed in making Curaçao such an important regional transshipment hub for container shipping.

Curaçao has always played an important role in international commerce due to its strategic location, stable political conditions and its deep and wide naturally sheltered main harbor. Throughout the centuries the main seaport of Curaçao, the Port of Willemstad, which comprises i.a. the St. Anna Bay and the Schottegat Bay, evolved from a few simple quays to a multi-faceted maritime service center, housing several transnational companies. These include one of the largest crude oil refinery and oil transshipment centers in the region, operated by Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. (PVDSA), state-of-the-art Curaçao Container Terminal offering an extensive array of cargo facilities, a dynamic Free Trade Zone, region's largest dry dock, and modern cruise ship terminals.

Cruise ship facilities

The Port of Willemstad currently has five wharves available for cruise vessels. All cruise wharves are secured and offer water and fuel bunkering facilities. Fuel bunker capacity is 250 tons/hour. Passenger facilities include toilets, telephones, small shops & handicrafts, information, bus and taxi terminals.

The cruise facility outside the St. Anna Bay, on the western shore at Rif, Otrobanda, some 200 meters from the harbor entrance, consists of a T-shaped jetty with a capacity of one cruise vessel. This facility can handle cruise ships up to 145,000 gross tons safely and without restrictions and overcomes the limitations of the St. Anna Bay. Bunkers are available with a capacity of 350 tons/hour.

The Mega cruise terminal is equipped with all facilities to embark and disembark passengers. Passenger facilities include on-site security, information officers, taxi and bus terminals, a covered area for luggage handling, rest rooms, a snack bar, an information booth and telecommunication services. Safety and convenience are the primary objectives of these facilities.

Bunkering

All marine fuels to vessels calling at the ports of Curaçao are supplied around-the-clock, without overtime charges, using state-of-the art machinery and equipment. All available fuels meet international standards and delivery is effected under independent inspection.

Deep-water Facilities

Very large vessels that are not able to enter the Port of Willemstad can make use of three other commercial ports of Curaçao: Caracas Bay, St. Michiel Bay, and Bullenbay, which can all accommodate vessels of any type and scale. The Curaçao Oil Terminal located at Bullenbay, with a transshipment capacity of 1,200,000 barrels per day can accommodate U.L.C.C.'s of up to 530,000 DWT on full draft. The terminal has six T-head jetties at its disposal and has a total tankage capacity of 1,775,000 barrels.

Ship repairs

The Port of Willemstad boasts Western hemisphere's largest and best-equipped commercial dry-dock in the Caribbean. It has a reputation for competent service and long experience in ship repairs, conversions and dry-dockings. The dry-dock offers, among others, hull, machinery, piping, electric, and electronic repairs to all types of vessels including offshore equipment, dredges, naval vessels and passenger ships.