By Manoj Kumar
NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Dubai-owned ports giant DP World will invest around $510 million to build a new container terminal at the Kandla port in the Indian state of Gujarat, its group chairman said on Friday.
"It will enable the delivery of trade opportunities by connecting northern, western and central India with global markets," Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, who is also DP World's CEO, said after the signing of an agreement between the Deendayal Port Authority and DP World officials.
The Indian government earlier this year approved a plan by Hindustan Infralog Private Limited, a joint venture between DP World and the state-owned National Investment and Infrastructure Fund, to develop the terminal on a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) basis.
DP world, which operates in 73 countries, last week reported a nearly 10% fall in first-half profit to $651 million despite a 13.9% year-on-year rise in revenue to more than $9 billion.
The new terminal, which should be completed by early 2027, will boost container traffic in India and reduce the cost of logistics, company officials said.
DP World operates five container terminals in India – two in Mumbai and one each in Mundra, Cochin and Chennai – with a combined capacity of about 6 million twenty foot equivalent units (TEUs), giving it a market share of 28% of container traffic volume in the country.
The new terminal will take the combined capacity to 8.19 million TEUs, a company statement said.
DP World’s Indian port and terminal investments are aligned with the country's Vision 2047, which aims to quadruple port handling capacity and develop logistics infrastructure to boost economic growth, the statement said.
($1 = 82.6230 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Manoj Kumar; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)