Global trade enabler DP World has inaugurated its Kigali Logistics Platform, Rwanda’s largest inland cargo handling facility that has been in test mode since September 2018. The facility officially opened by President Paul Kagame will handle about 50,000 TEUs annually.
Since it started operating last year the logistics platform has reduced truck-turnaround time from an average of 10-14 days to just 3 days. When operating at full capacity, it has the potential to save Rwandan businesses up to $50 million a year in logistics costs.
Kigali Logistics Platform was constructed by Dubai Ports World, a United Arab Emirates firm under a 25-year concession agreement signed in 2016 with the Rwandan government.
“I congratulate Dubai ports on successfully completing the test phase, which has already demonstrated significant reductions in truck turn-around time. With the launch of this facility, Rwanda is doing its part to connect with the larger market of more than 1.2 billion consumers in Africa and beyond. The Kigali Logistics Platform is really getting up and running at a pivotal moment in our continent’s economic transformation. We, therefore, want to challenge our business people and investors, starting with the industries located in this neighborhood and from the region and beyond, to make full use of this facility. There is no excuse not to pursue the vast opportunities available to us.” President Kagame said while inaugurating the facility.
The DP World Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem said that he believes in the economic potential of Rwanda and the African Great Lakes region. “DP World is proud to support Rwanda in its ambitions to establish itself as a key services and trade hub for the region.”
The $35 million facility has state-of-the-art technologies to ensure maximum security and transparency, it spans over 130,000m², including a 12,000m² container yard and a 19,600m² warehousing facility. DP World and government of Rwanda are exploring options of expansion to increase efficiency and provide more logistics solutions.
The facility will serve as a gateway to the heart of Africa, connecting Rwanda to neighboring countries including Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya. It will also access the port of Mombasa in Kenya and Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania, securing two trade gateways to the sea.
Notably, the Kigali-Dar es Salaam railway when completed will have its final cargo rail siding located at the Kigali Logistics Platform. This will significantly reduce logistics costs for exports and imports to the coast. At present, it costs three times more to transport a container from Kigali to Dar-es-Salaam as it does to transport the same container from Dar-es-Salaam to Shanghai.