Dubai-based DP World has won a 30-year concession for the management and development of a greenfield multi-purpose port project at Banana, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), with an option of a 20-year extension.
This will be the first deep-sea port in the country along its 37km coastline. The country currently only has the riverine port of Matadi.
DP World will establish a joint venture with the government of DRC to manage and invest in the Port of Banana.
DP World will have 70% share in the joint venture and the government of DRC will hold 30% share.
With an initial investment of $350m, the first phase of the project will include a 600m quay and 25ha yard extension with a container capacity of 350,000 TEU and 1.5m tonnes for general cargo.
DP World group chairman and CEO Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem 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.”
Construction is expected to commence in 2018 and is expected to be completed in 24 months.
The total cost of the project is more than $1bn over four phases.
The deep-water port is expected to give the DRC the opportunity to be connected into global trade lanes, access global markets and reduce its dependency on the neighbouring countries’ ports.
DRC Vice Prime Minister and Minister for 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 neighbouring 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.”