Gulf Craft to double production capacity in the Maldives
Headquartered in the UAE, Gulf Craft marks 20 years of manufacturing in the Maldives by announcing expansions plans following a large government contract for inter-island speed boats.
VIPs including Mohammed Alshaali (second right), Chairman of Gulf Craft
Gulf Craft has announced that it’s developing a new facility in the Maldives, so doubling its operations and production capacity in the country within 16 months. Founded and headquartered in the UAE in 1982, the builder is marking its 20th anniversary of operating in the Maldives, where it has a 100,000sqft manufacturing facility in Thilafushi producing pleasure boats and rapid transport vessels.
Gulf Craft says it provides almost 80 per cent of the Maldives’ water transportation services, which includes public transport, coast guard, emergency and ambulance services, resorts, and leisure boats.
Gulf Craft’s facility in Thilafushi, west of Malé
Last year, the shipyard was awarded a government contract to manufacture a fleet of speed boats for use across the country’s Integrated National Public Ferry Network.
The new speed boats, with a capacity of up to 53 passengers, will offer a transportation system to all administrative islands including the capital of Malé. The boats will be equipped with special packages for passengers travelling in emergency situations and will include access for stretchers and people with disabilities.
To produce the new speed boats, Gulf Craft will invest in a strategic development in the Maldives named Gulf Lagoon, where it will open its new production facility and create a new training facility for captains and crew. The development will also feature a marina and a resort.
Mohammed Alshaali, co-founder and Chairman of Gulf Craft (click for Asia’s Yachting Leaders 2022), said: “The Government of the Maldives and its people have constantly been a beacon of support since the establishment of our operations. We are grateful to the Maldives for entrusting Gulf Craft with projects that have played a part in the growth of the nation over these 20 years.
“The Maldives is our first international destination, where we have built in-country competencies by leveraging the opportunities that the country provides for the marine and tourism sector. With the doubling of our production capacity and the new training facility, we hope to serve the local community even better through the creation of new job opportunities and in further boosting tourism.”
Founded in the United Arab Emirates in 1982, Gulf Craft is celebrating its 40th anniversary, having built more than 10,000 boats in its four decades. It currently has over 1,000 employees across its two facilities in the UAE and its operation in the Maldives, with a total manufacturing capacity of 200 boats per year.
The UAE builder has committed to supporting the IMMAs programme run by the Water Revolution Foundation.