Damco expands in East Africa.
Damco has opened a new office in Djibouti, bringing the total number of the company's offices in sub-Saharan Africa to 32 across 26 countries. Djibouti's position on the major east-west trade lane between Europe, the Middle East and Asia has turned the port into a key transportation hub in the area.
The country also benefits from its status as a free-trade zone and is thus a key transhipment location for the region.
Damco Africa CEO Nils Havsager said: "Djibouti is the key gateway into the Horn of Africa, in particular for Ethiopia, and benefits from modern shipping terminals and an array of shipping lines servicing the port. Furthermore, it is very closely linked with the economies of the Middle East, where Damco also has a strong presence."
Havsager added that the opening of the Djibouti office follows Damco's expansion into Zimbabwe and Mozambique last year and re-affirms the company's commitment to Africa as well as its strategy of expanding the company's presence in emerging markets.
According to Mandeep Singh, head of Damco's Djibouti operations, trade through Djibouti has grown steadily over the years, and the company plans to launch a number of reefer solutions to provide a competitive mode of transport to support customers in Ethiopia.
For instance, flower exporters who previously relied on airfreight to transport their shipments to Holland will now be able to ship their flowers in reefer containers via land from Addis Ababa to Djibouti and then via ocean freight to Rotterdam.