Wilmington – The State of Delaware has reached a preliminary agreement with the Gulftainer Group, based in the United Arab Emirates, to lease the Port of Wilmington from the State, construct a new container shipping facility on the Delaware River, and significantly expand jobs at the Port over the next decade.
The Gulftainer Group is the largest independent, privately-owned port operator in the world. The company currently operates 15 ports and logistics facilities across four continents, including North America.
Under terms of the agreement:
GT USA would lease the Port of Wilmington for a term of 50 years.
The company would make royalty payments to the State of Delaware according to the volume of cargo that passes through the port.
Annual royalty payments would be expected to grow from approximately $6 million in 2018 to $13 million by 2027.
GT USA would agree to invest more than $580 million in the port through 2027, including approximately $410 million for a new container facility at the Edgemoor site.
Construction at the Edgemoor site would begin by 2022.
GT USA would guarantee that the number of jobs held at the port by members of the International Longshoremen’s Association would not fall below current levels.
GT USA would also establish a training facility at the Edgemoor site for jobs in the ports and logistics industries, with a goal of training 1,000 aspiring workers each year for high-quality jobs in Wilmington and beyond.
The Board of Directors of the Diamond State Port Corporation (DSPC), the public entity that owns and operates the Port of Wilmington, must approve terms of the agreement. Members of the Delaware General Assembly also must approve the agreement. The Board is scheduled to consider the agreement on April 6. If the Board consents to the terms, the agreement would be presented to the Joint Committee on Capital Improvement of the General Assembly, as required by Delaware law.
“We see enormous opportunity at the Port of Wilmington and are gratified by the support for GT’s plans from Delaware unions, business, and broader community,” said Gulftainer CEO Peter Richards. “We want to restore the Port as an important national cargo gateway, doubling cargoes, doubling revenue to the State, investing hundreds of millions of dollars and adding thousands of workers over the next decade. We see only upside in the US and the Port of Wilmington is poised to become one of the biggest success stories in the US ports and logistics sector.”
Source: State of Delaware