AD Ports Group sign MOU to develop, manage Ctg port

AD Ports Group sign MOU to develop, manage Ctg port

AD Ports Group signed an MoU with the Chittagong Port Authority to explore the future development and operation of the Multi-Purpose Port in Chittagong Port and other ancillary opportunities in Bangladesh.

Rear Admiral Mohammad Sohail, Chairman, Chittagong Port Authority, said: “The Multi-Purpose Port in Chittagong is a priority for the Government of Bangladesh. We are pleased to collaborate with AD Ports Group on the development of this vital project, leveraging their expertise and capabilities as a global trade and logistics player.”

Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Managing Director and Group CEO, AD Ports Group, said: “We are excited to explore the development and operation of the Multi-Purpose Port and other ancillary opportunities in Chittagong, the main seaport of Bangladesh, and look forward to leveraging our experience and capabilities to assist our partners in addressing increased trade volumes in one of the fastest growing economies in South-East Asia, guided by the vision of our wise leadership.”

Over 90 per cent of Bangladesh’s international trade is conducted through the ports of Chittagong. Bangladesh’s seaports are an integral part of the multimodal network that links the republic to the hinterland and provides sea access for the landlocked Himalayan countries Nepal, Bhutan, and India’s Northeast region.

Both nations celebrated 50 years of bilateral ties earlier in March this year. They are also in talks to ink a Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEPA) to enhance economic cooperation and open new avenues for trade and investment.

The UAE is considered Bangladesh’s second-largest remittance source. It is also a leading trading partner with a significant base of investment; the volume of non-oil trade exchanges between the two countries exceeds USD 2 billion.

The agreement marks a significant step toward enhancing the country’s import and export efficiency while reducing transportation costs and time.

CPA Chairman Rear Admiral Mohammad Sohail earlier stated that the port authority has accepted AD Ports’ initial offer to finance the terminal.

The non-binding MoU sets the stage for detailed planning and execution, which will follow government directives.

The bay terminal will be constructed on 2,500 acres of land along the Patenga Halishahar coastline, approximately six kilometers from the current Chittagong port.

The project will feature four terminals: a multipurpose terminal funded by AD Ports, and two container terminals built by PSA International Pte Ltd (formerly the Port of Singapore Authority) and DP World (an Emirati multinational logistics company based in Dubai) with investments of $1.5 billion each. Additionally, East Coast Group and its subsidiaries will invest $3.5 billion in a liquid cargo terminal.

An estimated $500 million will be allocated for the channel construction, with a total of $10 billion earmarked for various infrastructure developments, including a breakwater (surge barriers) and truck terminal.

According to CPA, the bay terminal project includes a multipurpose terminal and two container terminals with a combined berth length of 3,950 meters.

The multipurpose terminal will feature five berths with a total berth length of 1,500 meters, capable of accommodating Panamax-class container ships, bulk carriers, and ro-ro ships.

Each of the container terminals will have a berth length of 1,225 meters, with four to eight berths each.

Tarafdar Ruhul Amin, managing director of Saif Powertech, affirmed that Abu Dhabi Ports has adhered to all compliance requirements in entering this agreement with Chittagong Port.

Khairul Alam Sujan, vice president of the Bangladesh Freight Forwarders Association, said, “The Bay Terminal project is our long-awaited dream. Its implementation is definitely a positive news. Once operational, import and export trade will speed up significantly. Large ships will be able to anchor here, reducing time and cost.”

Currently, Chittagong Port can only accommodate ships up to 10 meters in depth and 200 meters in length. The new bay terminal will be able to accommodate vessels up to 12 meters in depth and 280 meters in length.

“Once completed, ships will no longer depend on the tides for berthing. The terminal will handle ships with a carrying capacity of 6,000 containers, compared to the current port jetty’s capacity of about 2,000 containers,” Khairul added.

As part of the land acquisition process, Chittagong Port has already acquired 66.85 acres of privately owned land and has been allotted 500.7 acres of government land at a nominal cost of Tk3 crore.

Recently, the port paid Tk3 crore to the Chittagong district administration for this allotment.

Additionally, the settlement of 124 acres from the Forest Department is in the final stages through the Ministry of Lands. The district administration is also in the process of acquiring 188 acres of disputed land with various individual ownership claims.

The remaining 1,620 acres required for the project will be reclaimed from the sea.