DP World partners with CDC Group to create Africa investment platform

DP World partners with CDC Group to create Africa investment platform
DP World's flagship terminal Jebel Ali

DP World has partnered with the UK’s development finance institution and impact investor CDC Group (CDC) to create an investment platform in Africa.

The platform covers a long-term investment period and DP World is contributing its stakes in three existing ports initially with expectations to invest a further US$1bn through the platform over the next several years.

Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman and CEO of DP World, said: “We are excited to announce a partnership with CDC Group that will enable increased investment in ports and logistics infrastructure across Africa, driving efficiency and trade growth.

“The partnership will create transformational opportunities for tens of millions of people over the next decade.”

The platform will invest in origin and destination ports, inland container depots, economic zones and other logistics across Africa to increase trade, create new job opportunities and broaden access to essential goods.

It will be initially seeded with minority stakes in existing DP World assets with significant capacity expansion plans including Dakar in Senegal, Sokhna in Egypt and Berbera in Somaliland.

The trade enabled through the ongoing expansions is expected to create an additional 138,00 employment opportunities for the wider community and, by 2035, the ports are expected to support stable employment for around 5m people directly.

CDC is set to commit approximately US$320m initially and expects to invest up to a further US$400m over the next several years.

“In CDC we have found a with whom we share the common goal to invest in the long term and help build responsible and sustainable infrastructure in Africa, which is key to unlocking the trade potential of the continent,” Bin Sulayem said.

Nick O’Donohoe, CEO of CDC, added: “Stable and flourishing economies are built on reliable access to global and intra-continental trade.

“Africa’s full potential is limited by inadequate ports and trade bottlenecks, putting the brakes on economic growth in some of the world’s fastest growing economies and undermining social resilience in the least developed parts of the world.”

O’Donohoe stated that the platform will help entrepreneurs and businesses to accelerate growth with access to reliable trade routes and will help African consumers benefit from the improved reliability and reduced cost of vital goods and food staples.

Owned by the UK government, CDC has experience of over 70 years successfully supporting the sustainable, long-term growth of business in Africa and South Asia.

It has a dual objective to deliver development impact by supporting business growth that lifts people out of poverty and makes a financial return.

Bin Sulayem added: “DP World is committed to Africa for the long-term and sees significant opportunity for future growth across the continent. The partnership with CDC offers the flexibility to accelerate and capitalise on these opportunities.

“By combining our in-depth knowledge of ports and logistics and CDC’s expertise in infrastructure investment in Africa, we can drive greater supply chain efficiencies, provide improved trade connectivity and ultimately enhance value for all stakeholders.”