US Navy plans to expand at Mina Salman
THE US Navy is expanding its facilities in Bahrain taking over space at the old Mina Salman Port in a move that will drastically improve logistical operations.
A spokesman confirmed the Navy had signed a lease agreement with the Government of Bahrain in January 2008 to take over 70 acres of the old port which was closed down to commercial and passenger shipping following the inauguration of the new Khalifa Bin Salman Port in April.
The US Navy currently has around 3,500 personnel based in Bahrain which is the home port for 16 naval and coastguard ships.
It has 40 acres at its base in Juffair and just two acres at Mina Salman so the additional space will mean a much improved service for the ships using the port.
Spokesman Lt Paul Macapagal said: "As you can imagine, at present, although ships come into Mina Salman, everything they need has to be brought from the base.
"This extra space will mean we can provide a lot of improved services and better quality of life for those on the ships as we will be able to site the equipment they need at the old port."
He said a release date for the land has not yet been agreed and plans for what will actually go on it are 'in the works'.
Bahrain is home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet whose area of operations covers more than seven million square miles including the pirate-infested coast of Somali and the Gulf of Aden.