Government says removing DP World was lawful, alleging underperformance and attempts to lock sovereign bodies out of decision-making processes.
Djibouti’s government has said it acted lawfully in seizing control of the Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT) from DP World, contrary to the claims of the Dubai-based operator.
According to the Djibouti Ports & Free Zones Authority (DPFZA), the government cancelled its contract on February 22 with DP World, which has operated the port since 2006 as part of a 20-year concession, in light of “recent poor performance” and to “rectify irregularities in the agreement covering its operation”. It said DCT is now under the authority of fully state-owned Doraleh Container Terminal Management Company, with DPFZA undertaking management responsibilities.
It said the port, which handled nearly 1m teu in 2016 and hosts some of the world’s largest carriers, including CMA CGM, MSC, and Maersk Line, would be “managed and developed in line with DPFZA’s strategy to develop Djibouti as a world-class trade and logistics hub”.
DP World said the “illegal seizure” of the terminal was a culmination of the government’s campaign to force the company to renegotiate the terms of its original concession, which was found to be “fair and reasonable” by a London Court of International Arbitration tribunal.
This is an edited extract from a longer article published in Lloyd’s List. Lloyd’s List subscribers can read the full original article via this link: Djibouti claims ‘legal right’ to take over Dolareh