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Khalifa Port’s owner unveils $1.1bn expansion

Khalifa Port serves more than 25 container shipping lines Media Office Abu Dhabi
  • Abu Dhabi port has grown from 2.43 sq km to 8.63 sq km
  • AD Ports Group aims to raise handling capacity to 25m tonnes
  • Logistics company has created roughly 373,500 jobs

The AED4 billion ($1.1 billion) expansion of Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi was inaugurated on Tuesday, 10 years after the port opened.

Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE’s president, described the expansion as a major national project that “will further enhance the UAE’s position in the global trade”.

The launch comes at the end of a year in which the site’s owner, AD Ports Group, listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Market, opened new trade routes and made a number of acquisitions.

The expansion includes the development of the port’s South Quay, Khalifa Port Logistics and Abu Dhabi Terminals. Khalifa Port has grown from 2.43 sq km to 8.63 sq km, while its quay wall has been extended from 2.3km to 12.5km.

The project is designed to make a major contribution to AD Ports’ goal of increasing annual handling capacity at Khalifa Port by 2030 to 15 million twenty-foot equivalent units, and general cargo handling capacity to 25 million tonnes.

AD Ports has contributed AED152.8 billion to the UAE’s GDP since its foundation in 2006. It has created approximately 373,500 jobs. 

People, Person, Man
Sheikh Mohamed inspects a map showing routes served by the port. Picture: Media Office Abu Dhabi

This year it has acquired a 70 percent stake in Transmar and TCI in Egypt, and an 80 percent equity stake in Global Feeder Shipping. It also bought Spanish logistics company Noatum. The company’s maritime division has grown its fleet to more than 175 vessels and expanded trade routes.

It reported revenue of AED1.5 billion and net profit of AED334 million in the third quarter.

Khalifa Port, inaugurated by the late Sheikh Khalifa in December 2012, was developed from a stretch of reclaimed land 4km out to sea. It now serves more than 25 container shipping lines with direct links to more than 70 international destinations. 

Falah Mohammed Al Ahbabi, chairman of AD Ports, said: “Today Khalifa Port is one of the most advanced deep-water ports in the world. By continuing to expand our operations internationally, we are honouring the memory of the leaders who placed us on the path to progress.”

Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, managing director and CEO of AD Ports, added: “We have grown from a local champion into a publicly listed group with an expanding global reach. We will continue to expand and invest in the future and demonstrate our capacity for excellence across international markets.”