Singapore Firm Eyes Yemen Port Investment

Singapore Firm Eyes Yemen Port Investment

M & C News
By Deutsche Presse-Agentur

Singapore – A Singapore-based firm is leading a group of global investors in a 450-million-dollar proposal to expand Yemen’s port of Aden, news reports said on Monday.

Overseas Port Management (OPM), which has been operating the container terminal since late 2003, is putting 23 million dollars into the expansion.

The move marks a vote of confidence in Yemen, a country lagging behind its oil-rich neighbours in economic development and where security is regarded as a key concern by foreign investors, The Straits Times reported.

PSA, Singapore’s port regulator, had been managing the terminal until a 2002 terrorist attack on a French oil tanker raised insurance premiums to levels that drove shipping lines from the port. PSA pulled out of the venture in October 2003.

Container volumes rebounded, helped by guarantees to shipping lines offered by the Yemeni government.

‘We are looking to develop four new berths over the next 25 years, depending on how demand grows,’ The Straits Times quoted OPM’s founder MMJ Subramaniam as saying.

‘This will boost capacity from an effective 500,000 boxes a year to a potential 4 million,’ he said.

The plan, which calls for co-investment by the Yemini government, is awaiting approval.