The US$538m first phase of the new deepwater Port of Posorja in Ecuador, operated by DP World, is now completed and successfully operational.
The overall US$1.2bn project aims to replicate Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port and freezone, making Ecuador a trade and logistics hub for South America’s west coast, and opening a gateway for vessels exceeding 10,000 teu in capacity.
The port has been operational for two months, handling thousands of containers and more than a dozen post-Panamax ships.
Posorja is expected to welcome an annual volume of 750,000 teu during the first phase, and 1.5m teu at full port capacity.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman and CEO of DP World, stated: “The beginning of operations at Posorja is a defining moment in Ecuador’s economic growth. The new port and Special Economic Zone will significantly improve Ecuador’s global competitiveness and position the country as a dynamic business hub for the west coast of South America, following the model that has been tried and tested in Dubai and around the world.”
“The last two months of operations have shown the importance and capability of the Port to importers and exporters, shipping lines and local authorities as we work hand-in-hand with our partners to enable trade and develop innovative logistics solutions,” he added.
Phase two of the project will be the development of Posorja ZEDE, a special economic zone (SEZ) for maritime, logistics and light industrial businesses.
The 1,000,070 sq m freezone will be modelled on Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port and freezone in the UAE, which is home to more than 7,500 companies, together responsible for around 35% of Dubai’s GDP.
Other DP World facilities around the world such as the UK’s London Gateway and the greenfield terminal in Caucedo in the Dominican Republic have attempted to replicate the model.
Nicolas Gauthier, CEO of DP World Ecuador said: “The port is being developed in line with international best practices, and is already creating thousands of direct and indirect job opportunities that are backed by robust social programs.
“A key example of this is establishing gender equality policies that have paved the way for the first female crane operators in Ecuador.”
The project includes a deep water port with a capacity of 1.5m teu, in addition to a 21 km access highway and a 21 nautical mile maritime access channel that is 16.5 m in depth.
The port’s three quay cranes are built by ZPMC and are the largest in South America with a safe loading capacity of 50, 65 and 80 tonnes and an outreach of 23 container rows on deck.