UAE-based Gulftainer has announced that the US Federal Government has completed a review of the agreement that grants the port operator the rights to operate and develop the Port of Wilmington in Delaware for 50 years.
Currently owned and operated by the Diamond State Port Corporation (DSPC), the Port of Wilmington is a fully serviced deepwater port and marine terminal, located on 308 acres at the confluence of the Delaware and Christina Rivers.
The milestone announcement follows an earlier preliminary agreement between Gulftainer and the State of Delaware to grant its subsidiary, GT USA Wilmington, the exclusive concession rights.
As part of the deal, Gulftainer said it is planning significant investments in developing the port’s cargo terminal capabilities to enhance its overall productivity.
In addition, the deal will include the construction of a new 1.2 million TEU container facility at DuPont’s former Edgemoor site that DSPC acquired in 2016.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) – a panel comprising military, homeland security, and federal law enforcement officials, among others – conducted the federal review of the Port of Wilmington agreement.
John Carney, Governor of Delaware, said: “The completion of the federal review is a significant step forward in finalising our agreement with Gulftainer that will safeguard and create well-paid blue-collar jobs at one of Delaware’s most important employment hubs.”
He added: “The planned investment will result in significant expansion at the Port of Wilmington, and help stabilise families and communities that rely on those jobs.”
Peter Richards, group CEO of Gulftainer, said: “From adding over 12,000 jobs to increasing the container trade volume and building new capabilities at the Port of Wilmington, we are confident of achieving substantial targets over the next ten years alone. Ultimately, in creating this shared value, we will strengthen revenue inflows to the State of Delaware.”
Established in 1976, Gulftainer is a privately owned independent port management and 3PL logistics company based in Sharjah. In the UAE, Gulftainer operates three main ports on behalf of the Sharjah Port Authority – the Khorfakkan Container Terminal (KCT), Hamriyah Port and the Sharjah Container Terminal (SCT).
The company’s international presence spans the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas with projects in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Turkey, Pakistan, Brazil, and the US.
In the US, Gulftainer currently operates the Canaveral Cargo Terminal in Port Canaveral in the state of Florida after winning a 35-year concession in 2015.