India's Adani Ports seeks to be global operator

India's Adani Ports seeks to be global operator

A project in Malaysia would be Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone's first foray into international marine terminal operations.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (APSEZ), which operates marine terminals at 10 locations in India, is looking to become a global port operator.

The company on Monday announced it signed a memorandum of understanding with Malaysia’s MMC Port Holdings Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of MMC Corporation Berhad (MMC), to assess the feasibility of constructing a greenfield multipurpose port meant largely for container-handling on Carey Island, about 30 miles southwest of Kuala Lumpur.

The MMC Group has a diversified portfolio of business activities that include port operations, logistics, energy, engineering, and construction, according to the announcement.

The joint project is being positioned as an extension of Port Klang, one of the world’s busiest transshipment gateways.

“Malaysia is very strategic to APSEZ global strategy, and with [the] Straits of Malacca being a global shipping route, it helps us to drive our global transshipment strategy further," Adani Group CEO Karan Adani said.  

He said the group expects significant supply chain synergies with two transshipment ports — Vizhinjam in India and Carey Island in Malaysia.

APSEZ also signed a deal with MMC and Sime Darby Property Berhad to explore the possibility of jointly developing an “integrated maritime” hub on Carey Island to support the proposed port project.

MMC Port Holdings is one of Malaysia’s largest port operators with five terminals — Pelabuhan Tg Pelepas Sdn Bhd, Johor Port Berhad, Northport (Malaysia) Bhd, Penang Port Sdn Bhd, and a 20 percent stake in the Red Sea Gateway Terminal at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

APSEZ owns and operates India’s biggest non-government cargo terminal at Mundra, which is close to doubling capacity to 6.6 million twenty-foot-equivalent units annually through strategic collaborations with liner giants CMA CGM and Mediterranean Shipping Co. The company previously said it aims to replicate the success of its flagship Mundra Port at the Vizhinjam site, on which New Delhi is relying heavily to win back domestic cargo relayed at Sri Lanka’s Colombo Port.