Dubai's DP World cleared of misconduct over Djibouti terminal

Tribunal exonerates port operator over allegations of illegal payments to secure concession to run terminal

A tribunal has exonerated Dubai-based DP World from all charges of misconduct in connection with the award of a 50-year concession to operate the Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT) in Djibouti.

The international tribunal, acting under the rules of the London Court of International Arbitration, was composed of Lord Leonard Hoffmann, Sir Richard Aikens and Peter Leaver QC, a statement said on Tuesday.

The claim, brought by the government of the East African country in 2014, accused DP World of illegal payments to the head of the country’s port and free zone authority, Abdourahman Boreh, to secure the concession to run DCT in 2006.

In March 2016, the English Commercial Court in London dismissed all charges against Boreh brought against him by the Government of Djibouti, related to his dealings with DP World.

Today the London Court of International Arbitration fully exonerated DP World, stating in the partial final award that the claimants’ claims had all failed and were dismissed.

It also said the claimants must bear all costs of the arbitration to date and pay the legal and other costs of the respondents in the arbitration upon an indemnity basis and in an amount to be determined by this tribunal in a further award.

Built and operated by DP World, the Doraleh Container Terminal was launched in 2009. The terminal is Djibouti’s biggest employer with almost 1,000 employees of whom 99 percent are Djibouti nationals.

Throughout arbitration proceedings, DP World has continued to manage the port.

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