Yeminvest launches Aden Distripark [Archives:2002/39/Business & Economy]
BY REDWAN A. AL-SAQQAF
ADEN BUREAU CHIEF
Yeminvest, a subsidiary of PSA Corporation, has on 17 September 2002, officially launched the Aden Distripark (ADP) located in the industrial and warehousing estate near Aden container Terminal in Yemen. The launch ceremony was officiated by his Excellency, the Governor of Aden, Mr. Taha Ahmed Ghanem, and well attended by government officials and representatives from the maritime and business community.
Situated within the Free Zone in the port of Aden, Aden Distripark represents the second major project for Yeminvest after Aden Container Terminal. The first phase of ADP is made up of 74 hectares of land and has received warm response from the local and international investment community. The list of tenants now include:
1)Aden for Soils & Mills
5)Husamco Trading & Contracting
6)IBN Al-Haj for Agriculture and Trade
7)Madina International of Technology
10)Yemen Jordanian for Investment
”We are happy to have taken a lease within the park. Its location is excellent, next to a modern international Container Terminal. Transport cost is no longer a problem” says Mr. Sooud Ali al-Harthy, General Manager of al-Khalij, a company which deals in vehicles.
Aden Distripark is part of the Government’s overall plan to develop the port city as a free trade zone. When fully completed, ”The economic life of the people of Yemen will be greatly improved. Already, it has provided both jobs and economic development to the people in Aden” says the Governor Taha Ahmed Ghanem.
The Aden Free Zone Chairman, Mr. Dirham Abdu Noman, who has been working closely with Yeminvest on the project is very optimistic saying ”The free zone would succeed because it has the backing of the most senior Yemeni politicians and business leaders. The president himself has taken an active role in promoting the port and the free zone and the Terminal.”
Currently, phase one of the ADP has achieved a take-up rate of more than 30%. More investors are expected to come on board before the end of the year. The ADP is designed with the investors in mind. Companies based at the Park will operate under free trade zone status, which provides for 100% foreign ownership and repatriation of profits. The profits generated are also tax-free, says Yeminvest CEO, Mr. Richard Cheong.
The launch of the Distripark has been complemented by the good performance of Aden Container Terminal. Up to August this year, the Terminal has handled more than one million TEUs since its start of operations in March 1999. The Terminal continues to register strong competition. From January to August 2002, the Terminal handled around 307,000 TEUs, a growth of 36% over the same period in 2001.
Aden is well positioned to attract more foreign investments. It is strategically located close to the east-west shipping routes and markets in East Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan and Western India. The port also offers a deep natural harbor and abundant supply of low-cost labor.
Aden Distripark and Aden Container Terminal are being developed by Yeminvest- a joint venture between PSA Corporation Ltd. and Yemen Holdings Ltd.
Phase one of Aden Distripark offers 74 hectares of leasable land with a ready supply of water, electricity and communications. Tenants can commission purpose-built units, renting parcels of a land ranging from 3,000 to 20,000sq meters. ADP will be developed in stages according to demand. When fully extended, the Distripark is expected to occupy 1,550 hectares and leased to dozens of small and medium-sized companies focused on light manufacturing, packing, warehousing and related industries.
Aden Container Terminal operates 700 meters of berth and 5 post-panamax quay cranes in the port of Aden in Yemen. It enjoys the patronage and support from several international shipping lines such as APL and PIL.
On his part, Chairman of the Aden Free Zone, Dirham Noman said that the official launch of the warehousing and industrial zone is considered as one of the significant of the Aden Free Zone phase. It is a continuation of pledges that have been given in cooperation with Yeminvest and the PSA.
He added the Aden warehousing and industrial zone is fully equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and ready for receiving investors, emphasizing on the support and attention rendered for the it by the wise leadership of the president of the republic.
“We present this humble project to the Yemeni people on the occasion of the 26 September Revolution and 14 October Revolution and to our political leadership,” Dirham noted further.
He confirmed that the Aden Free Zone had won the trust of the wise leadership of the president.
On the other hand, Mr. John Kouk Jonj ENG, the Yeminvest Chairman of the Board pointed out that this tremendous project is considered the second successful project of the Yeminvest. It is complementary to the Aden Container Terminal port. Thirty hectares have been completed and fully equipped with the basic infrastructure with a view of providing suitable investment atmosphere.
It is worthwhile mentioning that more than one million containers
been unloaded till the end of August 2002 and 307000 containers have been unloaded starting from January to August 2002. This is clear evidence of the revival of Aden Container Terminal port in a very short period of time.
He also said the main reasons behind the tremendous success of the new project can be attributed to the infinite support and the strenuous efforts exerted by the political leadership of president Ali Abdullah Saleh, the Aden Governor, Taha Ahmed Ghanem and the Chairman of the Aden Free Zone, Mr. Dirham Noman.
In the same context, Gerald McDuffee, a member of the board said that Aden Container Terminal port is regarded one of the significant pillars for warehousing and industrial zone particularly after a 3-year of constant painstaking efforts. It is a step in the right direction towards famous international trade refineries, and manifests itself in this tremendous project.
This a clear indication of the political leadership support for surmounting difficulties faced by the Yeminvest and the PSA along with stability which is represented by the official launch of the first phase of the Aden Distripark.
Aden Governor, Taha Ahmed Ghanem, Mr. Dirhem Noman, the Chairman of the Aden Free Zone, accompanied by Mr. John Kouk Jonj ENG, the Yeminvest Chairman of the board of Directors, Mr. Richard Cheong, Yeminvest Executive Manager, Mr. Gerald McDuffee, the company’s board member, Mr. Adnan al-Qaf, in charge of the company’s Corporate Affairs and the Operating Manager of the PSA inaugurated the opening ceremony of the project by unveiling a monument representing the project.
The inauguration ceremony was also attended by Mr Abdulkareem Shaef, the Deputy Governor, Mr Mohammed Saleh Tareeq, Director General of Aden Security, Mr Naser Mansour Hadi, the PSO deputy for Aden, Abyan, and Lahj governorates and a number of prominent figures.