It will operate the two multi-purpose ports of Port Owendo in Libreville, Gabon’s capital city, and Port Gentil, which is 160 km south of Libreville, in the centre of Gabon’s oil exploration and production zone.
The tender was awarded in the name of Gabon Port Management SA (GPM), Portek’s Gabon-based subsidiary, and was won in the face of competition from several other port management companies. The paid-up capital is expected to be S$6m, with initial investments of another S$3m. The company expects to finance further investments from internal cashflows.
GPM will be responsible for the management, maintenance and infrastructure of both ports. It will introduce IT systems for the various aspects of port operation and will install security systems, institute best practices and generally improve efficiency.
Much of Gabon’s GDP is derived from oil, timber and mineral exports and, because of its relative stability, a number of international companies use the country as a base for conducting business in the West and Central African region. Port Owendo and Port Gentil play a crucial role in the economy of the country, and are expected to assume even greater importance as it develops its considerable natural resources and industries.
The Gabon concession adds to Portek’s growing network of ports in the western hemisphere, including operations in Algeria and Malta. In a statement, the company said it would look to expand this network further in the near future.