The Dubai DP DP is partnering with an Israeli group to bid for one of Israel’s two main ports and explore the possibility of opening a direct shipping line between the two Middle Eastern countries, it said on Wednesday.
The announcement comes a day after Israel and the United Arab Emirates signed a historic agreement to normalize ties and marked a major development in trade and economic co-operation.
Dubai’s state-owned DP World, which operates ports from Hong Kong to Buenos Aires, has signed a series of agreements with Israel’s DoverTower, including a joint offer to privatize Haifa’s Mediterranean port, one of Israel̵
“Israel has two ports, the port of Ashdod and the port of Haifa. They are strong ports in excellent places. If there is an opportunity, there is nothing to stop us from being there,” DP World President Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem told Arabia TV.
DoverTower is owned by Israeli businessman Shlomi Vogel, a shareholder in Israeli shipyards and a partner in the port of Eilat.
Vogel said that as a result of the deal, DP World will cooperate with Israeli shipyards in the joint venture, which will participate in the privatization tender in Haifa.
DP World and DoverTower said they would also investigate the opening of a direct shipping line between the port of Eilat in the Red Sea and Jebel Ali from Dubai, the largest transhipment center in the Middle East.
“Our work to build trade routes between the UAE, Israel and beyond will help our customers do business in the region more easily and efficiently,” bin Sulaem said.
Israel is selling its state ports and building new private docks in a bid to boost competition and reduce costs.
The port of Haifa will have to be modernized to compete with the modern one built in the area by the Chinese International Port Group in Shanghai.
The shipyards in Israel and the Dry Dock in Dubai will also explore partnerships in the production and marketing of products in Dubai.
Reuters news agency