A deal to build and run a giant port at Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) has been signed by developer Emaar, The Economic City (Emaar EC), and Dubai-based marine terminal operator DP World.
Emaar EC is a Saudi-listed company managed by Dubai’s Emaar Properties and a number of high-profile investors from the kingdom.
The port – one of the six key components of the 168 million sq m KAEC – will be the largest in the Red Sea and one of the top 10 in the world with a capacity of 20 million TEU containers. It will be able to accommodate the new generation of mega vessels with capacities of more than 10,000 TEU.
A multipurpose cargo terminal will be operational by the end of 2010 and a 1.6 million TEU container terminal by mid-2011 after which the capacity of the port will be increased in phases. In addition to creating 15,000 direct and indirect jobs the port is expected to contribute SAR10 billion (Dh9.79bn) a year to the GDP once all the phases are complete.
The signing ceremony was hosted by Amr Al Dabbagh, Governor of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA).
He said: “The authority is committed to the kingdom’s vision to make the Saudi economy one of the top 10 competitive economies in the world by the end of this decade. To achieve our goal we encourage major local, regional and global companies to invest in infrastructure to augment investment in high-growth strategic sectors and thus enhance competitiveness. KAEC seaport is the first in the kingdom to be completely financed by the private sector. The agreement is an important step in developing KAEC within the desired timeframe. The port will catalyse regional and international investment to KAEC and make a substantial contribution to GDP in addition to creating jobs.”
Emaar EC Chairman Mohamed Ali Alabbar said: “With its strategic location on the Red Sea, the KAEC seaport will create a regional logistics hub that will further stimulate the Saudi economy through new job and investment opportunities. The port is stationed on one of the largest and busiest shipping routes in the world and will offer an integrated transportation system to deliver cargo seamlessly to various destinations within the region and internationally.”
DP World Chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem said: We are pleased to be involved in this exciting project and welcome the opportunity to bring our expertise in developing and operating ports globally to this pioneering development. We look forward to working with Emaar EC and SAGIA.”
Emaar EC and DP World to build Saudi port