Dubai Portland World which has its first ever modern Inland Port in Rwanda, will be officially launched in January next year, according to the port’s Chief Executive Officer.
“We are operating with live cargo to test the system for go live. But official launch is expected between January or February next year,” Sumeet Bhardwaj, CEO of DPW Logistics Rwanda told KT Press.
The Dubai port operator established $80 million project subsidiary in Rwanda – meant to reduce on the cost and duration traders have been incurring to move their goods from the main ports in Mombasa (Kenya) and Dar-es-Salam in Tanzania.
In a statement released by the United Arab Emirates-based Dubai Ports World, the Kigali port will help Rwanda serve as a regional hub for Intra-African trade, despite being a land-locked country.
In March this year, African Heads of State signed the ‘Africa Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) – a continental deal that will promote free movement of goods and people and connect Africa’s market of 1.2 billion people.
“We also have the idea of using Kigali as a centre of Intra-Africa trade since Rwanda is basically surrounded by other land-locked countries like Zambia, Burundi and East of the Democratic Republic of Congo,” part of the statement made by DPW officials read.
Rwanda is the company’s first landlocked country to operate its logistics park.
The port provides a platform for the traders to boost their accessibility to the global market and enhance their business improvement through one-stop shop.
Currently, the cost of transport of a 20 foot container from Shanghai in China to Mombasa port costs between $500 to $1000, while transport cost for the same container from Mombasa to Kigali varies between $3000 to $4000.
With the introduction of DPW Kigali, it will serve the inland logistics problems, delays and cost by providing a one stop shop for all logistics requirements and cargo services.
The first phase, which is already operating the live cargo to test the system to go live, includes a container yard and goods storage facilities, space for cargo forwarders, shippers and transport operators.
The first phase will host a 12,000sqm2 container yard with a capacity to hold 50,000 units and two 19,600 sqm2 warehouses with an estimated annual capacity of 640, 000 tons each.