China Merchants Group has signed the USD 350 million investment deal with Ethiopia’s state owned company Great Horn Investment Holding on December 29, paving the way for the revamp Port of Djibouti, which is more than a century old. Located in Djibouti City, the USD 3 billion project is to be modelled on the southern Chinese port of Shekou in Shenzhen that is integrated with a free-trade zone and business centre. State-controlled China Merchants played a key role in Shekou’s development.
The first phase of the project, building an exhibition centre and a four-star hotel, began on October 8 and is expected to cost USD 513 million. Skyscrapers, walking areas and shopping malls would also be built.
China Merchants, which owns a 23.5% stake in the Port of Djibouti, said it saw opportunities and economic benefits in developing, operating and managing the redevelopment project.