International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI) and the Belgium based Dredging International (DEME Group) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to co-operate in the further deepening of the Congo River, DR Congo.
With the Democratic Republic of Congo Government’s (DRC) support, the parties intend to deepen the Congo River, in phases, to an eventual depth of 40ft and beyond, ICTSI said in its announcement.
“This will eliminate current draught restrictions in the Divagante area near Boma, and enable direct calls by mainline vessels at the ports of Matadi and Boma. By doing so, both ports will resume their historic roles as the preferred natural gateways to the capital city of Kinshasa and its surrounding extensive hinterland, home to a rapidly growing market of 30 million people, the single largest in Central Africa,” according to the official statement.
The project, requiring an initial investment of €35 million, will deliver extensive operational efficiencies and cost savings to the western DRC supply chain and the market as a whole with these progressively realized from 2018 onwards.
“We look forward to working with Dredging International and the DRC Government to realize this important project and the diverse benefits it will deliver to the transportation sector and the economy as a whole. It builds on the co-operative approach taken to the development of the Matadi Gateway Terminal and will represent a key component in the modernization of DRC marine infrastructure with benefits felt along the whole supply chain,” said Hans-Ole Madsen, Senior Vice President, ICTSI, Europe, Middle East and Africa region.
International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI), the Philippines based terminal operator, operates the new Matadi Gateway Terminal in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Matadi Gateway Terminal is a joint venture company between, ICTSI, The Ledya Group and SCTP SA.