Karachi Gateway Terminal Limited (KGTL), a joint venture of UAE’s Abu Dhabi Port Group and Karachi Port Trust to improve infrastructure and facilities at one of the major ports of Pakistan, was unveiled on Thursday. Sindh Governor Kamran Khan Tesori inaugurated the Karachi Gateway Terminal Limited by unveiling the plaque in a ceremony held here at Karachi Port Trust. Abu Dhabi Ports Group and Karachi Port Trust signed an agreement and memorandum of understanding.
The 50-year concession agreement would attract a much-needed investment of over $ 2 billion to expand and modernise shipment facilities and establish a special economic zone and rail connectivity between KPT and Port Qasim.
Chief Executive Officer ADPG Captain Juma Shamsi and Chairman KPT Syed Sayedain Raza signed the agreement in the presence of Federal Minister of Maritime Affairs Faisal Sabzwari, Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah, United Arab Emirates (UAE’s) Minister for Energy and Infrastructure Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei, Investment and foreign trade Minister Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Ambassador Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook al Maktoum, Consul General in Karachi Bakheet Ateeq AlRemeithi. Diplomates, elected representatives and higher officials were also present.
Addressing the ceremony, Governor Sindh said that Karachi Gateway Terminal Limited would help to modernise the terminal with the induction of state-of-the-art facilities. He lauded the UAE’s investment in key port operations would also help stabilise Pakistan’s economy.
Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Faisal Sabzwari, addressing the signing ceremony, informed that an upfront investment of Rs.50 million would be followed by further investment in PICT and Port Qasim, and up-gradation will result in 12.5 % enhanced royalty.
He assured job security to employees and said that no employee was allowed to be unemployed and all the 634 top to bottom rank employees would be hired by Abu Dhabi Ports Group to manage, operate and develop the KGTL.
He said that UAE always stood beside Pakistan in times of need, particularly in national disasters. A Pak-UAE joint venture was another hallmark of cordial relations of brotherly countries that would transform the negative perception of Pakistan’s economy.
Chief Executive Officer ADPG Captain Juma Shamsi vowed that the KGTL terminal would emerge as an important port not only in the region but also for regional and global business with an approach of cost reduction and efficiency enhancement and will leave significant impacts on Pakistan’s economy and Pak-UAE bilateral relations.
He said that currently, UAE is Pakistan’s biggest trading partner in the Middle East, with bilateral trade amounting to $ 9.3 billion in 2022, and this terminal will further increase it besides opening new avenues of business and development.
He said that the group would invest in infrastructure, railways and digital solutions and making the operations easier would reduce operating costs.
CEO KPT Syed Seyedain Raza Zaidi hoped the upfront investment of millions of dollars in the project as the first drop of the rain and expansion of the terminal port infrastructure would increase revenue and gradually transform Karachi as a regional trading hub.