Abu Dhabi-based AD Ports Group, the regional logistics and port operator, and France-based CMA CGM Group, have signed a 35-year concession agreement to build a 1.8m-teu-new terminal in Khalifa Port.

Khalifa Port new terminal, the first semi-automated container port in the GCC region, will be managed by a joint venture owned by CMA CGM’s subsidiary CMA Terminals with a 70 % stake, and AD Ports Group with a 30% stake.

The project investment is estimated at $154m. The terminal construction would start in 2021 and is to be operational in 2024.

The terminal´s phase 1 will feature an initial quay length of 800 metres and an estimated annual capacity of 1.8m teu. AD Ports Group will be responsible for developing a wide range of supporting marine works and infrastructure. This includes up to a total of 1,200 metres of quay wall, a 3,800-metre breakwater, a fully built-out rail platform, and 700,000 square metres of terminal yard.

Present in the UAE for 15 years, the CMA CGM Group has 10 offices and connects the UAE to the world with 13 weekly services to 9 ports.

The agreement confirms Khalifa Port’s standing as one of only a few major ports in the world providing hubs for four of the world’s top shipping lines, including CMA CGM, as well as serving as an instrumental part of the global maritime trade connecting markets from east to west. 

 “One of the key factors that has greatly contributed to the economic growth of Abu Dhabi and the UAE has been our stable economic environment that is ripe for foreign investment. Coupled with competitive free zone and business engagement initiatives that aid foreign businesses in establishing a presence in the country with ease, the UAE has become a key investment destination among many of the world’s leading players seeking to extend their reach into the Middle East,” said H.E. Falah Mohammed Al Ahbabi, Chairman of AD Ports Group.

This landmark agreement with the CMA CGM Group is a prime example of those continued efforts and one that will significantly accelerate trade and the development of industry in the UAE and beyond. 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,“ he added.


 “At home, we expect the presence of the shipping line terminal, which will link directly to Khalifa Port’s upcoming rail terminal and utilise its services, to accelerate trade flows moving in and out of the UAE, while also encouraging CMA CGM Group’s customers to consider establishing a presence in Abu Dhabi,” commented Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Group CEO, AD Ports Group,  

Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the CMA CGM Group, said “The ambitious project we are launching 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.”

Source: Seatrade Maritime News