Global terminal operator DP World plans to develop a new container terminal facility in Doraleh at the Port of Djibouti. The US$300mn investment will enable DP World to handle an additional 1.5mn TEU annually.

This investment is the latest of a number of large scale development projects undertaken by DP World which will further strengthen the company’s global network of port operations. The company is already engaged in the development of several international container transhipment terminals designed to enhance world trade. Current major projects include the India Gateway Terminal at a greenfield site in Vallarpadam, Cochin, and the recently completed first phase of the Pusan Newport development project in Korea. The new terminal at Djibouti will be located 11km from the existing one and DP World plans to start work on the site within the next few months. The terminal, which will have eight Super Post-Panamax gantry cranes and a quay length of 900m, is expected to commence operations in late 2008.

DP World manages the Port of Djibouti which currently has the capacity to handle 10mn tonnes of cargo and 500,000 containers per year. Under DP World management, container productivity at the port has doubled to more than 25 moves per hour, putting it amongst the highest in Africa.

Joost Kruijning, senior vice-president, operations, DP World, comments: “When completed, this facility will give DP World a very strong platform to service our customers’ operations in Eastern and Southern Africa. Our commitment to investing in this project is long term and I look forward to working closely with our partners to develop Djibouti into a key regional transhipment hub.”

Djibouti lies on the main east-west trade route with minimal deviation and serves as the gateway for the strong transit trade to Ethiopia and the hinterland.

Its economy is service-based and the port operations account for a bulk of the country’s economic activity. The regional economy is continuing to develop and there is a rapidly increasing demand for expanded infrastructure to handle the existing transportation challenges.

Mohammed Sharaf, CEO DP World, adds: “This project is in line with our long-term strategy, which is based our customers need and where they wish us to be with the quality services they have come to expect of DP World. Investment in infrastructure is vital for Djibouti to support its hinterland and to benefit from its rapidly growing economy. DP World remains committed to long term investment to ensure that we meet our customers’ current and future needs as well as those of local communities and the region.”
This announcement follows DP World’s US$30mn investment in the Doraleh Oil Terminal project The Government of Djibouti has contracted DP World to manage the terminal once it is completed.