Dec. 23 (SomalilandPress)- Bolloré Africa Logistics, a unit of Bollore SA, may sign an agreement to manage the port of Berbera and oversee $700 million of upgrades to the facility in Somalia’s breakaway northern Somaliland region, Abdillahi Duale, the foreign minister, said.
“Our discussions are already in an advanced stage,” Duale said today in an interview in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. “We have already made a basic agreement.”
Representatives of Bolloré, an investment company controlled by French billionaire Vincent Bollore, have met with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and Somaliland President Dahir Riyale to discuss the agreement which will probably be signed next year, he said. Berbera port handles food aid and other cargo bound for landlocked Ethiopia.
Port revenue provides approximately 75 percent of the Somaliland government’s $50 million in annual revenue. Somaliland, a former British protectorate that merged with Italy’s Somali colony in 1960 to form Somalia, has remained largely free of violence during the 18-year civil war in central and southern Somalia.
To contact the reporter on this story: Jason McLure in Addis Ababa via Johannesburg on firstname.lastname@example.org.