China-based Cosco Shipping Ports and Abu Dhabi Ports have broken ground for the construction of a new container terminal at Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Construction and development of the project – CSP Abu Dhabi Container Terminal – is expected to last approximately 18 months. The terminal will become operational in the first quarter of 2019.
The partners have inked an agreement for development of a container freight station, which will be the largest in the region. The agreement is part of ambitious plans to boost the container-handling capacity by over two fold at Khalifa Port in the future.
In 2016, Abu Dhabi Ports inked a 35-year concession agreement with Cocso to operate a new $700m terminal which is expected to add 2.4 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) per annum to the port’s existing capacity of 2.5 million TEUs.
Cosco Shipping also has an option to increase the capacity by a further 1.1 million containers.
Minister of State and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports Dr Sultan Al Jaber said: "Following the guidance and vision of the leadership, Abu Dhabi Ports has played an important role in expanding trading links between the UAE and China, which is now the UAE’s second largest trading partner.
“The partnership between Abu Dhabi Ports and Cosco Shipping Ports to develop the region’s largest container freight station will add a new dimension to UAE-China trade relations and is fully aligned with Abu Dhabi’s Vision 2030 to drive growth, attract investment, support economic diversification and create sustainable jobs."
China’s National Development and Reform Commission deputy director Ning Jizhe said: "Khalifa Port is one of the fastest growing ports and an important gateway port in the region, with huge potential and prospect. Cosco Shipping Ports is marching another step forward in the port development project with Abu Dhabi Ports.”