Work on phase one of the Berbera free zone project in Somaliland is set to start after the final agreement was signed between DP World and its government in Dubai.
The agreement paves way for the to development of a greenfield economic free zone in Somaliland to complement the growth of the Port of Berbera.
DP World, the global trade enabler expects to break ground on the 12 square kilometre free zone project this year. Located next to the port, it will support the growth of Berbera as a regional trading hub and generate jobs.
Group Chairman and CEO of DP World Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem said that the project will boost the region’s economy.
“Our vision for Berbera is to makeit a regional maritime hub in the Horn of Africa and its development will encourage growth for the region’s economy,” he said.
“It’s also a boost for local prosperity –jobs for the people of Somaliland and future generations. We look forward to bringing our global experience here and to help develop the Berbera Corridor, which is key to encouraging regional economic activity.”
Republic of Somaliland Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation Dr. Saad Al Shire said:
“Developing a free zone will complement the growth of Berbera Port, enabling it to become a gateway for trade to the region and the whole of Africa. It will also generate jobs for the local population and encourage small and medium-sized companies in the area to locate their operations in an environment conducive to trade. Our partnership with DP World is a model that we are keen to develop and for the benefit of all.”
The free zone will target a wide range of businesses including warehousing, logistics, traders, manufacturers and other related businesses.
The Berbera free zone project is also modelled on DP World’s Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) in Dubai and aims to attract investments, encourage trade, create new jobs and position Berbera as a gateway port for the region.