The government of Somaliland, and logistics company, DP World, have this week held a groundbreaking ceremony as work begins at Somaliland’s strategic Berbera Port.
Speaking this week, President of the Republic of Somaliland, Muse Bihi Abdi and DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem launched the first phase of work on the Port.
DP World is a leading enabler of global trade and an integral part of the supply chain. The company has a portfolio of 78 operating marine and inland terminals supported by over 50 related businesses in over 40 countries across six continents.
Meanwhile, Somaliland is a self-declared state, internationally considered to be an autonomous region of Somalia.
The first phase of their Port will consist of building a 400-metre quay and 250,000 square-metre yard extension as well as the development of a free zone to create a new regional trading hub.
DP World Berbera, the joint venture company behind the project, will serve land locked countries in the Horn of Africa such as Ethiopia, which has a 19% stake in the project as a shareholder.
Long term DP World partner, Shafa Al Nahda Contracting have been awarded the construction contract for the port expansion. Shafa Al Nahda have been involved in the Port of Dakar expansion in Senegal as well the Port of Maputo expansion project in Mozambique.
“This event is a landmark in the history of Somaliland and for DP World,” said Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem.
“We are delighted that construction work has begun and over the next few years we will see a transformation in the capacity of this major infrastructure asset that will benefit people both here and across the Horn of Africa, providing an alternative gateway to international markets and providing jobs to the people of Somaliland,” he continued.
“This is all part of our vision to act as an enabler of trade and to encourage growth by helping African countries develop their economies with access to global markets. Investment in this natural deep-water port and free zone will act as a catalyst for the growth of the country and the region’s economy and create jobs at many levels,” Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem added.
President of Somaliland Muse Bihi Abdi, said that connecting to landlocked countries such as Ethiopia and the rest of the region will reinforce the firm relationships that now exist and make Somaliland an important player in regional economic integration and growth.
“The importance of the Port of Berbera as a Red Sea gateway for the Middle East and Africa can now be realised, unlocking our potential as a trade hub and creating jobs across the country,” he concluded.