DP World sees traffic at its ports lift as world trade rises

DUBAI’S DP World, the world’s third-largest container operator, saw sales rise 14 per cent higher in 2010 compared to the previous year, in a sign that at least parts of the world economy are gathering momentum.

DP World, which is 80 per cent owned by Dubai World, the Arab emirate’s debt-laden, government-owned conglomerate, said the strongest gains were in Asia, Australia and America, as well as in new terminals in Peru and China.

DP World said 49.6m TEU (twenty-foot equivalent container units) came through its 49 terminals in 28 countries last year.

The firm also operates the Southampton and Tilbury ports in the UK.

The firm’s chief executive Mohammed Sharaf said: “We remain confident about the long-term outlook for the container terminal industry. Handling 50m TEU across our global portfolio is a major milestone for DP World. It puts our annual throughput for 2010 well ahead of historic peak levels seen in 2008.”

DP World also said it is on track to launch a secondary listing of its shares on the London Stock Exchange in the second quarter of this year. Currently about 20 per cent of DP World is listed on the Dubai stock exchange.