Times of Oman
Nov 30, 2015 LAST UPDATED AT 12:24 PM GMT
Sohar Port celebrates 600 years old festival
June 16, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Containers being loaded at the Sohar Port. Photo - Supplied

Muscat: Sohar Port and Freezone hosted its sixth annual herring party in celebration of the Dutch obsession with eating raw herring. The event attracted more than 100 businessmen and women from across the region to the Crowne Plaza in Sohar.

The much-anticipated event has become a regular feature in the Sohar annual calendar, and provided a relaxed setting in which to reflect on the strong ties that have been established between the Sultanate of Oman and the Netherlands, as Sohar prepares to take over Muscat's key port operations. It also presented an opportunity to reflect on new growth opportunities following sustained investment in the port and its adjoining freezone. Sohar welcomed its first 10,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) ship last month.  

Symbol of innovation
The event was attended by Sohar Industrial Port chief executive officer Andre Toet who gave his thoughts on the Holland New Herring – or Hollandse Nieuwe – which traditionally involves holding a cured herring by its tail, throwing your head back, and lowering it whole into your mouth.

He remarked: "I hope the Holland new herring will act as symbol of innovation and a reminder of how a simple commercial adaptation has led to the creation of a national delicacy and an industry that catches, processes, and consumes over 12 million kilos of fish every year."

Reflecting on the success of recent milestones, including the arrival of the first 10,000 TEU container ship, Edwin Lammers, Sohar Industrial Port executive commercial manager said: "The year 2014 has been a great year for the Sohar Port and Freezone, and our ongoing success is a clear indication of the durability of the vision we are building. That vision includes a commitment to creating similar stories to those experienced over a millennium of enterprise and sea trade in the Netherlands, right here in the Middle East."

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