Dubai headquartered DP World has been awarded a 30-year concession along with the option to extend for another 20 years for development and management of a Greenfield multi-purpose port of Banana project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
A joint venture will be created by DP World who will hold 70% control with the remaining 30% being held by the government of DRC.
Phase one of the Greenfield project will cost an estimated $350 million in investment and will comprise of a 600-meter quay and 25-hectare extension to the yard with a container capacity of 350,000 TEU and 1.5 million tonnes for general cargo. Construction for the phase is planned to start this year with a projected duration time of two years.
A further three phases are expected at a total cost of $1 billion, however, these will dependant on demand for the port and the infrastructure in place.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO, DP World, said: “We are delighted to extend our African footprint further with a major investment in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is Africa’s third-most populous country but has no direct deep-sea port. 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 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. We are confident that this investment will deliver attractive returns to shareholders over the longer-term and we look forward to bringing DP World’s world-class productivity-enhancing, security, safety and environmental best practices in container terminal development and operation to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.”
The Democratic Republic of the Congo Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Transport and Communications, Jose Makila Sumanda said, “We are excited to partner with DP World on this landmark project. The Port of Banana will offer the first deep-water port to the Democratic Republic of the Congo that will dramatically improve the cost and time of trade as the majority of the cargo is still handled by neighboring countries. “The project will provide us with a first-class marine facility comparable to other African countries in terms of capacity, draft and ability to handle the latest generation of vessels.
“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.”