DP World has won a 30-year concession to manage and develop a greenfield multi-purpose port project at Banana, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
According to DP World, the port of Banana will be the African country’s first deep-sea port along its 37-kilometre coastline, which currently only has the riverine port of Matadi.
The concession also has an option for a 20-year extension.
DP World will set up a joint venture with 70 percent control, with the DRC’s government holding the remaining 30 percent share, to manage and invest in the port.
The first phase of the greenfield project – with an estimated initial investment of $350 million – will include a 600-metre quay and 25-hectare yard extension with a container capacity of 350,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) and 1.5 million tonnes for general cargo.
Construction is expected to begin in 2018 and take 24 months complete, with the initial investment spread over the same time frame.
The total project is expected to cost more than $1 billion over four phases, dependent on market demand for the port, industrial and logistics zone infrastructure. In a statement, DP World noted that the development will give the DRC the opportunity to further connect into global trade lanes and have access to global markets.
“Investment in this deep-water port will have a major impact on the country’s trade with significant cost and time savings, attracting more direct calls from larger vessels from Asia and Europe, and ultimately acting as a catalyst for the growth of the country and the region’s economy,” DP World group chairman and CEO Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem said.
“DP World has become a major player in Africa and the Port of Banana will contribute to our global network and continued growth in the developing markets,” he added. “We are confident that this investment will deliver attractive returns to shareholders over the longer-term.”
Jose Makila Sumanda, the DRC’s Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Transport and Communications said that the country was “waiting for this strategic and structural project for a long time.”
“We are confident that with DP World as a partner, we will be able to meet the expectations of our people, traders and exporters to have access to more markets and to bring more efficiency and cost effectiveness to international trade,” he added.For all the latest transport news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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