Dubai-based global port operator DP World has started the first direct freight service between the UAE and Iraq, to make the flow of goods between two countries faster, safer and more efficient.

The service connects Jebel Ali Port and Umm Qasr Port in southern Iraq and takes approximately 36 hours, according to a tweet from the Dubai Media Office.

DP World’s new facility allows cargo owners and logistics companies to load a UAE-plated trailer in their local warehouse, ship it securely to Iraq and get the same trailer back, without the cargo having to change hands along the route.

"Unaccompanied trailers are loaded on to roll-on, roll-off (RORO) freight vessels, leaving the driver and cab behind at the port. Once the trailer reaches Umm Qasr Port, an Iraqi truck can drive it to its final destination anywhere in the country. Once delivered, the empty trailer is then returned to Umm Qasr and shipped by to Jebel Ali," Post and Parcel said in its website.

DP World reported a 37% rise in 2022 net profit, attributable after separately disclosed items, to $1.23 billion on strong revenue growth.

According to DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, though the start of 2023 has been encouraging, "the outlook is uncertain due to the more challenging macro and geopolitical environment, and we expect growth rates to soften in 2023."

(Writing by Seban Scaria; editing by Anoop Menon)