New terminal to aid China trade flows
This week saw the inauguration of a 35-year Abu Dhabi Ports–COSCO SHIPPING Ports concession deal that will let China COSCO SHIPPING Corporation (COSCO) develop and run a new Khalifa Port container terminal to support trade flows anticipated from China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
Abu Dhabi Ports chief executive Mohamed Al Shamisi told American business news channel CNBC that having infrastructure whereby the largest vessels can enter and use Khalifa Port (located in the UAE) as a hub will serve the BRI, adding that it is “in the heart” of the venture and that he anticipates the partnership to provide a world trade boon.
According to the chief executive, the agreement will help bolster Abu Dhabi Ports’ goal of boosting capacity, as well as generate opportunities from foreign direct investment from other countries.
“We see big potential of foreign direct investment, especially having COSCO by our side,” he said.
Khalifa Port, located halfway between Abu Dhabi and Dubai, now serves more than 25 shipping lines and has connections to 70 international destinations.
Mr Al Shamisi said that makes it a “strategic location” for trade within the UAE, Middle East and broader ecosystem.
The chief executive also noted that the trade war between the US and China has not had an effect on Abu Dhabi Ports.
“We are good allies of all … countries,” he explained.
“We see a huge import coming in [and a] huge import going out from the region, and we are playing an essential role in such things.”
COSCO SHIPPING Ports managing director and vice chairman Zhang Wei claimed that even amid ongoing China–US uncertainties, a “long-term growth base” for the partnership would be provided by increasing Chinese consumer demand.
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