Abu Dhabi Ports and French containerline CMA CGM have signed a 35-year concession deal which will see the establishment of a new terminal with an annual capacity of 1.8m teu set to open in 2024. The partners are expected to commit around $154m to the project.
The terminal will be set up in Khalifa Port and managed by a joint venture owned by CMA CGM’s subsidiary, CMA Terminals, which will own 70% stake, with the remaining 30% owned by Abu Dhabi Ports. Abu Dhabi Ports will be responsible for developing up to a total of 1,200 m of quay wall, a 3,800 m breakwater, full built-out rail platform, and 700,000 sq m of terminal yard.
The terminal should provide CMA CGM with a new regional hub and enable the liner to develop its service offering between Abu Dhabi and South Asia, Western Asia, East Africa, Europe and the Mediterranean as well as the Middle East and the Indian Sub-Continent.
Rodolphe Saadé, chairman and CEO of CMA CGM, said: “The ambitious project we are launching today in Abu Dhabi marks an important milestone in CMA CGM’s development strategy in the region. This state-of-the-art terminal will contribute to enhancing Khalifa Port’s position as a leading global hub and to boosting the region’s economy, accelerating trade flows in and out of Abu Dhabi. It will also enable our group to expand its shipping and logistics network in the region, where we see a lot of growth potential.”
Falah Mohammed Al Ahbabi, chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, added: “This agreement will aid us to realise our long-term ambitions to become a top 10 ports, industrial, and logistics operator by expanding our capacity and growth across the region and beyond. In all, we project that over the next five years, the CMA Terminals joint venture will drive the further development of the Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (KIZAD), while simultaneously contributing significantly to the national GDP.”
CMA CGM currently operates 49 port terminals in 27 countries via its subsidiaries CMA Terminals and Terminal Link. In the UAE, the company employs around 450 people and connects the country to the world with 13 weekly services to 9 ports.