Middle EastPorts and Logistics

DP World lashes Djibouti government, claims it is owed more than $400m

A decision to be taken later this week by the government of Djibouti to apply to the country’s high court to rule all previous international adjudications null and void has been labelled “a complete disregard for and contravention of the global legal system and existing contracts”, by DP World, the terminal operator that was ousted from the country last year.

DP World had had a concession in Djibouti since 2006. The government in Djibouti had tried to get DP World to renegotiate its contract towards the end of 2017. In February last year the government terminated DP World’s contract and has since nationalised the Doraleh Container Terminal.

“The move is proof of Djibouti’s complete disregard for recognized legal practice and respect for contracts calling into question any investment in the country both now and in the future,” stated a release from DP World yesterday.

Djibouti has ignored five rulings over the past three years from cases brought by DP World at courts in London, which have resulted in claims of over $400m.

DP World has also kicked off legal proceedings against China Merchants who are involved in a rival terminal to Doraleh despite DP World’s original contract stating it would be Djibouti’s exclusive terminal.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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