DAR ES SALAAM: DAR ES SALAAM Port reached a significant turning point this year with the signing of a concession agreement between the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) and DP World of the Emirates of Dubai.
The agreement aims to optimise the port’s operations, improving transport and logistics services throughout the country and its hinterland.
This is the first phase of a multi-phase investment plan. DP World will initially invest over 250 million
US dollars to upgrade the port, with the investment increasing to 1 billion US dollars during the concession period. This investment will also include hinterland logistics projects.
During the historic signing event of three agreements in Dodoma last October, Minister for Transport Prof Makame Mbarawa stated, “The signing of the concession agreement between the government and DP World is a momentous event. It marks another significant breakthrough in building best-in-class infrastructure in Tanzania under the public-private partnership model.”
“With DP World’s expertise, the port will play an important role in supporting the creation of direct and indirect employment in various sectors such as transportation, distribution and supply chain. Importantly, TPA will be a shareholder of the port concessionaire, and there will be no job losses for employees at the port authority,” he added.
The three agreements signed are the Host Government Agreement (HGA) and the lease and operation agreements between the Tanzanian government and DP World.
TPA Director General Mr Plasduce Mbossa highlighted the lack of substantial investment at the Dar es Salaam Port as a major cause of inefficiencies, preventing it from competing with neighbouring ports and operating below international standards.
“Despite taking various measures to improve the Dar es Salaam Port’s efficiencies, the port operations have remained below international standards,” he said.
Mr Mbossa explained that the waiting period for a ship to dock is an average of five days at the Dar es Salaam Port, compared to 1.25 days at Mombasa and 1.6 days at Durban.
He attributed these inefficiencies to the absence of modern Information and Communication (IT)
systems, insufficient area for cargo storage, few docks for ship anchorage, and a lack of modern
equipment for loading and unloading ships.
Mr Mbossa emphasised that these issues require significant investment and operation.
The inefficiencies at the Dar Port have several negative effects, including increased costs for ships waiting at the anchorage. For example, one day spent at anchorage costs 25,000 US dollars, and a ship may take up to five days at the dock for offloading and loading, while the international standard is only one day.
The investment in the Dar es Salaam Port will have a positive impact on Tanzania’s socio-economic development, including job creation and increased access to products and services.
The port will connect to the hinterland of Sub-Saharan Africa through a network of roads, highways, railways and dedicated freight corridors and ports. This will support the growing demand for logistics solutions across the continent and connect businesses in the region to global markets.
DP World, the trade and logistics company, will work with the TPA and existing stakeholders to
improve cargo clearing and planning, strengthening Dar es Salaam’s role as the maritime gateway for green energy metals from the copper belt in southern-central Africa.
The company will also invest in modernising the port, potentially including temperature-controlled
storage to enhance Tanzania’s agricultural sector and greater connections to rail-linked logistics.
These investments may also involve the future development of a special economic zone alongside the port’s logistics sector, further increasing Tanzania’s role and influence in global trade.
Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of DP World, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem,
expressed his honour in partnering with the Tanzanian government to revitalise the port of Dar es Salaam.
He stated, “The development will deliver trade opportunities for the region, connecting East Africa and broader sub-Saharan Africa with global markets, driving economic growth, job creation, enhanced access to products and services and creating value for all our stakeholders. Alongside other ports that we operate, this concession agreement marks another milestone in our collective efforts to leverage DP World’s global and local expertise to enhance the region’s supply chain and support the economic
growth of the entire continent.”