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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 June 2018

Abu Dhabi Ports, Russia sign pact to bolster trade, attract investment to UAE free zones

Pact between ports operator, Russia's Trade and Economic Development Council seeks to attract Russian investment in Kizad and Khalifa Port Free Trade Zone 

<p>Container volumes at Khalifa Port in 2019 are expected to double the 1.5m twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) handled in 2017. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Ports</p>
<p>Container volumes at Khalifa Port in 2019 are expected to double the 1.5m twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) handled in 2017. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Ports</p>

Abu Dhabi Ports signed a pact with Russia to strengthen trade ties and attract Russian companies to invest in the emirate’s free zones.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Abu Dhabi Ports and Russia’s Trade and Economic Development Council will seek to raise awareness about investment opportunities in Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (Kizad) and Khalifa Port Free Trade Zone, according to an emailed statement from the ports operator.

“With trade still around $2 billion, we see potential for Russian investors to build industrial facilities and innovation centers in the UAE,” Igor Egorov, honorary chairman of the Russian Business Council and regional representative of the Russian Trade and Economic Development Council, said.

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The UAE is seeking to drive economic diversification and foreign investment through its free zones by developing infrastructure to create a logistics hub. Last year, Abu Dhabi Ports got a $300 million investment from China. In 2016, it signed a $738 million deal with China’s Cosco Shipping to build and operate a second terminal at the Khalifa port.

The deal with the unit of China’s biggest shipping group will start with initial capacity of 2.5 million 20-foot containers in 2019, and has an option to increase that to 3.5 million.