DP World says it will defend Djibouti port rights

12 September 2018
The Djibouti government has rejected the London court ruling issued in August

Dubai-based ports operator DP World said it would continue to pursue all legal means to defend its rights as a shareholder and concessionaire in Djibouti’s Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT).

DP World issued the statement in response to reports that the Djibouti president enacted a decree, which aims to transfer the shareholding of Port de Djibouti SA (PDSA) in the disputed container terminal to the government.

PDSA owns a 66.6 per cent stake in DCT, while DP World owns the rest.

In a statement, DP World said the shareholding transfer “appears to have been made in an attempt to flout an injunction of the English High Court, which restrains PDSA from using its shareholding to take control of DCT.”

MEED understands Hong Kong-based China Merchants Port Holdings owns 23.5 per cent shares in PDSA.

DP World signed a concession agreement with Djibouti in 2006 for the operation of the terminal for 30 years. The Djibouti government began making corruption allegations against DP World in 2014.

In February, DP World filed a new arbitration case in London against the government of Djibouti, which it has accused of illegally seizing control of the terminal.

On 31 August, the High Court of England & Wales issued an injunction against PDSA, as shareholder in DCT, ordering that, among others, it be not allowed “to act as if the joint venture agreement with DP World has been terminated or appoint new directors or remove DP World’s nominated directors without its consent.”

The Djibouti government rejected the court’s ruling.

MEED understands the English law governs the 2006 concession agreement, which provides that disputes relating to the agreement are to be resolved through binding arbitration in the London Court of International Arbitration.

 

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