DP World, CDC to invest up to $1.7 bln in Africa

A renowned port operator in Dubai DP World and Britain’s development finance agency CDC Group on Tuesday announced plans to jointly invest about US$1.72 billion in Africa’s logistics infrastructure over the next several years. The project will kick off with the upgrade and renovation of three ports.

According to CDC, the priority of this investments will to expand and improve the condition of ports operated by DP World in Egypt’s Ain Sokhna, Senegal’s Dakar and Berbera in Somalia’s breakaway region of Somaliland.

State-operated DP Word has indicated that it will provide US$1 billion over the next several years, while CDC has broken up its capital supply into two instalments, starting with US$320 million and another US$400 million stored up for possible disbursement. Both firms have indicated that the joint investments may eventually be extended to cover other regions in Africa, in hopes that it will ramp up inbound and outbound trade for the continent.

“We have an aligned vision with DP World in that we wanted to do this across the continent in as many ports as possible,” CDC’s Head of Africa Tenbite Ermias said in his response to Reuters. This joint investment, alongside its port investment, will also consider infrastructure projects like container depots and business parks.

The partnership will also see CDC becoming a minority shareholder in the three ports. As a result of the planned expansion of these three ports, about 35 million people are expected to enjoy increased access to vital goods, in the primary investment locations and surrounding territories. The project will also create 5 million jobs and also increase total trade value to US$51 billion by 2035.

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