DP World vows to fight on to protect Djibouti port concession

DP World says it will continue to pursue all legal means to defend its rights at Doraleh Container Terminal after Djibouti Government enacts new decree
DP World vows to fight on to protect Djibouti port concession
By Sam Bridge
Tue 11 Sep 2018 03:54 PM

DP World said on Tuesday that it will continue to pursue all legal means to defend its rights as a shareholder and concessionaire in Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT) in Djibouti.

DP World's announcement follows a decision by the President of Djibouti to enact a decree which purportedly transferred the shareholding of Port de Djibouti (PDSA) in Doraleh Container Terminal to the Government of Djibouti.

PDSA is 23.5 percent owned by China Merchants Port Holdings Company Ltd of Hong Kong.

DP World said the transfer appears to have been made in an attempt to flout an injunction of the English High Court which restrains PDSA from using its shareholding to take control of DCT.

DP World added that this is the latest step in the Government of Djibouti’s five-year campaign to remove the 2006 concession agreement with the Dubai port operator away from DCT.

“Investors across the world must think twice about investing in Djibouti and reassess any agreements they may have with a government that has no respect for legal agreements and changes them at will without agreement or consent,” a DP World spokesperson said. 

On August 31, the High Court of England & Wales issued an injunction against PDSA, as shareholder in DCT, ordering that it shall not act as if the joint venture agreement with DP World has been terminated or appoint new directors or remove DP World’s nominated directors without its consent.

In an apparent attempt to circumvent the injunction, on Sunday the Government of Djibouti transferred PDSA’s shares in DCT to itself.

The 2006 concession agreement, which is governed by English law, provides that disputes are to be resolved through binding arbitration in the London Court of International Arbitration.
Such arbitration proceedings are ongoing, DP World said, adding that to date the Government of Djibouti has not made any offer to compensate DP World.

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