AD Ports signs deal with Egypt to develop and operate Safaga port terminal

New terminal, spanning about 810,000 square metres, is scheduled to become operational by 2025

The new deal between AD Ports Group and Egypt, signed in the presence of Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, aims to boost infrastructure at Safaga port. Photo: AD Ports Group
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AD Ports Group, the operator of industrial cities and free zones in Abu Dhabi, signed an agreement with the Red Sea Ports Authority to develop and operate a multi-purpose terminal at Safaga Sea Port in Egypt to boost economic ties between the UAE and the North African country.

As part of the deal, AD Ports will invest $200 million over three years to develop advanced units and infrastructure at the terminal, including the superstructure, equipment, buildings and utilities, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The new terminal, covering an area of about 810,000 square metres, is expected to become operational by 2025 and will feature a 1,000m quay wall and will be capable of handling diverse cargo types, including dry bulk, liquid bulk, containerised cargo, and RoRo (roll-on/roll-off) cargo ships, it said.

“This significant milestone embodies the strength of trade ties between the two nations and the keenness of the UAE’s wise leadership to continue supporting the ambitious development plans of the Egyptian government,” said Capt Mohamed Al Shamisi, managing director and group chief executive of AD Ports.

“Through this agreement, we aim to spur economic development, create jobs, boost local industries, and attract further investments into the region."

The latest agreement comes as AD Ports, listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, continues to expand its operations globally.

In June, it signed a 50-year agreement with Pakistan’s federal agency, Karachi Port Trust, to boost infrastructure at Karachi Port.

Under the terms of the agreement, a joint venture between AD Ports, as majority shareholder, and UAE-based Kaheel Terminals has been formed to manage, operate and develop berths six to nine at the Karachi Gateway Terminal's east wharf, the company said at the time.

It also signed a 30-year concession agreement with the government of the Republic of Congo to manage and operate a multipurpose New East Mole Terminal in the city of Pointe-Noire.

Its other deals announced this year include the acquisition of 10 offshore vessels for $200 million to meet growing demand from the energy sector as well as an €81 million ($84.7 million) deal with Spain's Grupo Logistico Sese to buy its finished vehicles logistics business.

“Safaga's strategic position on the Red Sea coast allows [us] to not only enhance our commercial offerings and diversify revenue streams but also contribute to Egypt’s broader economic objectives, setting the stage for further co-operation and opportunities in other sectors,” said Saif Al Mazrouei, chief executive of Ports Cluster at AD Ports.

The UAE is Egypt’s second biggest trading partner in the region while Egypt is ranked as the UAE's fifth leading trade partner in non-oil trade with Arab countries.

Established in 2006, AD Ports' portfolio comprises more than 30 ports and terminals, and more than 550 square kilometres of economic zones in the Khalifa Economic Zones Abu Dhabi Group (Kezad), the largest operator of integrated economic zones in the UAE.

The company reported a 21 per cent jump in third-quarter net profit to Dh381 million ($103.7 million) driven by robust business activity and recent acquisitions.

Updated: December 27, 2023, 12:27 PM