Monday, March 27, 2017

Port and Logistics Group Delivers Millions of Litres of Water to Somaliland

410 Road Tankers to Deliver Water to Drought Stricken Area
Shipping News Feature
SOMALILAND – UAE – In a step away from the group's normal operations DP World is delivering over 4.5 million litres of water to people living in villages in the Sahil region of Somaliland. The water will be distributed in 410 road tankers, carrying 11,000 litres each. It is estimated the vital aid will reach 15,000 people living in villages in the region over the next month. The action is taking place less than a month since the company took over operations for the management and development of a multi-purpose port in Berbera and DP World is working in partnership with the Water Authority to address the urgent needs of people in the region in response to the devastating drought which has been affecting the area for two years.

Despite a stream of World Food Aid convoys regularly travelling to Somalia itself under the protection of anti-piracy forces the Republic of Somaliland still suffers from immense deprivation. Over 1.6 million people in Somaliland (46% of the population) are in need of some form of humanitarian aid with the drought drying out wells, causing crop failure and the deaths of live-stock. DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said:

"DP World’s $442 million investment in the port of Berbera will include the first phase of a 400 metre quay and 250,000 square metre yard extension, with gantry cranes and reach stackers to handle containers and cargo. Work will be phased over time and is dependent on port volumes, with the aim of creating a regional trading hub along with the scope for a free zone. The project will focus on containers with the capability to handle other types of cargo and will be implemented with the government of Somaliland."

As so often in such cases there is a strong motive for Middle Eastern help in the stricken Republic, generally recognised as an autonomous region of Somalia itself. Just last month it was revealed that Berbera is to become a military base for the United Arab Emirates after legislators voted, with some opposition, to allow the plans. The UAE is of course part of the coalition currently engaged in fighting Houthi forces in Yemen, including a naval blockade enforced since 2015, and the decision to undergo development has not been welcomed by many of the neighbouring countries.