Posted on December 14, 2022
Khartoum inks a preliminary deal with a group led by UAE’s AD Ports Group and Invictus Investment to build and operate Abu Amama port and economic zone on Red Sea.
Sudan has signed an initial $6 billion deal led by United Arab Emirates’ AD Ports Group and Invictus Investment to build a vast new Red Sea port and economic zone.
“The massive project, which is estimated to cost around $6 billion, will give a strong boost to the national economy and will bring countless benefits for the whole country,” said Sudan’s Finance Minister Gibril Ibrahim during the signing ceremony on Tuesday.
The Abu Amama port, to be built north of the existing key hub of Port Sudan, will include an industrial zone, an international airport, and an agricultural area covering over 400,000 acres, Ibrahim said.
A 450-km-long road will connect Abu Amama port with the agricultural area of Abu Hamad in Suda n’s River Nile State, the two sides said at the signing ceremony held in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum.
AD Ports Group is majority owned by ADQ, among Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth funds.
Invictus Investment is headed by Osama Daoud Abdellatif, head of the Dal Group, Sudan’s biggest conglomerate.
The UAE’s official WAM news agency said the deal gives the consortium the “right to develop, manage, and operate port and economic zone assets” in Sudan.
Road to democracy
The announcement comes a week after Sudan’s ruling military generals signed a “framework agreement” with the country’s main pro-democracy group, among other political forces, which could spur a new civilian government and military removed from power.
But the framework agreement offers only a rough outline of how the country expects to resume its road to democracy and has been rejected by several major political forces.
The UAE, along with the United States, The United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia, helped broker last week’s framework deal after facilitating months of cross-party talks
Sudan has been reeling from the crippling aftermath of the 2021 military power grab led by army chief Abdel Fattah al Burhan.
The coup derailed a transition installed following the 2019 ouster of president Omar al Bashir.
On December 5, military leaders and multiple civilian factions signed the deal as the first component of a planned two-phase political process.
The WAM news agency, calling Sudan “a major trading partner” of the UAE, said exports from Sudan to the UAE totalled $1.86 billion in 2020, while the UAE exported $1.14 billion of goods to Sudan in the same year.