Newly elected Somaliland's President Muse Bihi Abdi from the ruling Kulmiye Party speaks during press conference in Hargeisa, Somaliland, on November 21, 2017.
Muse Bihi from the ruling Kulmiye party was on November 21 declared the winner of last week's presidential poll in the self-proclaimed state of Somaliland, election officials said. / AFP PHOTO / STR
Somaliland's President Muse Bihi Abdi says, despite the challenges, a plan to develop its Port of Berbera with DP World and Ethiopia will go ahead. AFP

Exclusive: 'Somaliland's $442m port project with DP World and Ethiopia will go ahead'

In April 2016, the Republic of Somaliland, an African nation situated in the Horn of Africa, proudly announced a $442 million international public-private partnership that represented the largest investment into the country since it declared independence from its neighbour, Somalia, in 1991.

The government of Somaliland and DP World, a leading multinational terminal operator, established a joint venture company which will manage and invest in the Port of Berbera. Construction of the quay extension is expected to start by the middle of this year and will take 18 to 24 months to complete.

The investment will establish Somaliland as a regional trading and maritime hub. It will create a container terminal with a capacity to handle up to 1.25 million TEUs a year when complete. This is a clear vote of confidence in Somaliland’s political and social stability.

Ethiopia, the region’s largest economy and most populous land-locked country in Africa, joined Somaliland and DP World in the joint venture in March 2018, turning the development of Berbera Port into a multilateral investment. Berbera is, thus, well positioned to become a gateway port for the land-locked in east Africa. This will bring economic prosperity, social development and political stability to the region, especially Somaliland where the unemployment rate among people under 30 is as high as 70 per cent.

Yet despite the obvious benefits that the trilateral investment would bring to the Horn of Africa, the Somali Parliament last Monday spitefully declared this project void and has sought to ban DP World from investing in Somaliland. Although this decision has no legal merit and will not in any way impact the deal with DP World and Ethiopia, it demonstrates to the international community Somalia’s senseless hostility towards Somaliland, which has been unrelenting since we took the decision to break off our union on May 18, 1991, and regain our sovereignty and independence as a nation state.


Read more:

Somaliland defends stake sale of DP World Berbera port to Ethiopia

Somaliland minister seeks energy investment from UAE

Somaliland leader slams "senseless hostility" of opposition to DP World deal


The international community should be asking why Somalia – a country that has received billions of dollars in aid over the past three decades, but which still remains a failed state – is using the little bandwidth available in its political spectrum to undermine a project that would deliver greater prosperity for the region.

My administration has been preparing to restart the dialogue with Somalia to discuss issues of mutual interest and negotiate amicable separation. These talks were due to begin later this month.  But given the uncalled for hostility from Somalia, we have now been forced to reconsider our position.

Somalia has overstepped the line. Its unsuccessful attempt to alienate much-needed investment in the Horn of Africa will only hurt everyone in the region, including many innocent Somali people.

Therefore, we unequivocally condemn its posturing, and we call on the international community to do the same in the name of peace and prosperity in the Horn of Africa.

HE Muse Bihi Abdi, President of the Republic of Somaliland 

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Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8

The specs

Engine: 3.0-litre six-cylinder MHEV

Power: 360bhp

Torque: 500Nm

Transmission: eight-speed automatic

Price: from Dh282,870

On sale: now


Display: 12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR, 2,732 x 2,048, 264ppi, wide colour, True Tone, ProMotion, 1,600 nits max, Apple Pencil hover

Chip: Apple M2, 8-core CPU, 10-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine

Memory: Storage – 128GB/256GB/512GB / 1TB/2TB; RAM – 8GB/16GB

Platform: iPadOS 16

Main camera: Dual 12MP wide (f/1.8) + 10MP ultra-wide (f/2.4), 2x optical/5x digital, Smart HDR 4

Video: ProRes 4K @ 30fps, 4K @ 24/25/30/60fps, full HD @ 25/30/60fps, slo-mo @ 120/240fps

Front camera: TrueDepth 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.4), 2x, Smart HDR 4, Centre Stage, Portrait, Animoji, Memoji; full HD @ 25/30/60fps

Audio: Four-speaker stereo

Biometrics: Face ID, Touch ID

I/O: USB-C, smart connector (for folio/keyboard)

Battery: Up to 10 hours on Wi-Fi; up to nine hours on cellular

Finish: Silver, space grey

In the box: iPad, USB-C-to-USB-C cable, 20-watt power adapter

Price: WiFi – Dh4,599 (128GB) / Dh4,999 (256GB) / Dh5,799 (512GB) / Dh7,399 (1TB) / Dh8,999 (2TB); cellular – Dh5,199 / Dh5,599 / Dh6,399 / Dh7,999 / Dh9,599

Where can I submit a sample?

Volunteers can now submit DNA samples at a number of centres across Abu Dhabi. The programme is open to all ages.

Collection centres in Abu Dhabi include:

  • Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC)
  • Biogenix Labs in Masdar City
  • Al Towayya in Al Ain
  • NMC Royal Hospital in Khalifa City
  • Bareen International Hospital
  • NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain
  • NMC Royal Medical Centre - Abu Dhabi
  • NMC Royal Women’s Hospital.
Ovo's tips to find extra heat
  • Open your curtains when it’s sunny
  • Keep your oven open after cooking
  • Have a cuddle with pets and loved ones to help stay cosy
  • Eat ginger but avoid chilli as it makes you sweat
  • Put on extra layers
  • Do a few star jumps
  • Avoid alcohol


Company name: Spare

Started: March 2018

Co-founders: Dalal Alrayes and Saurabh Shah

Based: UAE

Sector: FinTech

Investment: Own savings. Going for first round of fund-raising in March 2019