DP World appeals against Indian court ruling
Dubai Ports World has lodged an appeal with the Indian city of Ahmedabad’s local court against a ruling issued by the court over Mundra Port, a statement sent to Emirates Business said.
The city’s civil court on Tuesday notified DP World-owned Mundra International Container Terminal Ltd (MICT) that its petition for an interim stay has been dismissed.
The court had earlier decided to terminate a sub-concession agreement between MICT and Adani’s Mundra Port and Special Economy Zone Ltd (MPSEZ) that took place in January 2003.
Termination of the sub-concession agreement means DP World will have to surrender the container terminal and hand over its possession to the MPSEZ.
DP World is currently appealing on the “procedural issues, while the substantive legal issues will be addressed in the future”, a spokesman from DP World said.
“Meanwhile, there is no impact on our operations,” the statement said. “We continue to serve our customers at Mundra with the high level of efficiency they have come to expect. This benefits both the Mundra community and the region’s economy.”
The state’s port regulator Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) had taken strong objection when DP World did not seek its permission before taking over the MICT from United Kingdom’s P&O, The Times of India newspaper reported. The permission was mandatory as per the concession agreement between MPSEZ and GMB in 2001. This takeover was a part of DP World’s global acquisition of P&O’s container terminal business.
The MPSEZ officials said they would appoint an overseer to adjudge the depreciation cost of the time period after GMB had issued notice to MPSEZ and MICT in November last year.
But by filing a civil suit against MPSEZ’s order to stop functioning at Mundra port, MICT contended that DP World was not bound to follow the concession agreement, and a change in MICT’s holding was not in violation of the norm.
DP World has been planning to invest $500 million (Dh1.8bn) in India over the next two years to develop infrastructure at its port operations, including rail links and roads. DP World has, to date, invested $1.5bn in developing container terminal infrastructure in India. And over the next few years, the company said this investment is likely to reach $2bn.
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