The government of Djibouti through the Djibouti Ports and Free Zone Authority (DPFZA) has launched the Port of Djibouti regeneration project to turn the Historical Port of Djibouti into an international business district dubbed the East Africa International Special Business Zone.
In a statement, the DPFZA noted that the regeneration project will take place in six phases. The first will see the creation of the International Demonstration Area, a 220,500 square meter area that will include an exhibition Centre, including a Centre of excellence for maritime studies, as well as conference rooms, a hotel, and apartments.
The first phase will solely cost approximately US$ 153M and is due to be completed within a span of 60 months.
Continuation of Djibouti’s recent developments
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Aboubaker Omar Hadi the Chairman of DPFZA said that the project is a continuation of Djibouti’s recent developments and it assumes the Port-Park-City concept, which refers to the integration of ports, industrial parks, and services.
“Ports are a key node in the transportation of goods and services. This international free trade zone will bring added value to these goods and it will also facilitate the development of services, particularly in the financial sector,” explained Hadi.
Additionally, according to the DPFZA, the development will advance the East African country’s Vision 2035 and the national development strategy to maximize the country’s geostrategic position.
Development of port infrastructure in the country over the last decade
Over the last decade, Djibouti has built new specialized port infrastructure to gradually distribute the activities of the historical Port which was initially built-in 1888. The new infrastructures include Doraleh Multipurpose Port. Launched in 2017, this port is one of the most modern ports in Africa and has the ability to provide accommodation for vessels with up to 100,000 DWT.
Other developments include the SGTD, a key transshipment hub connected to the Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway, and the Ports of Ghoubet and Tadjourah, which are mainly designed to handle salt and potash respectively.