Plan to construct $28-mn warehouse in UAE raises prospects of Indian rice & polymer exporters

Companies exporting rice, white goods and polymer from India to the Persian Gulf have got a leg up from a proposal to construct a warehouse in the UAE.

The Singapore-headquartered transportation solutions enterprise, BoxcoWorld FZE, on November 1 inked a memorandum of understanding with Dubai-based global maritime major DP World to invest $28 million to construct a modern warehouse in the Jebel Ali Free Zone, a free trade zone in the UAE. The deal was signed by Abdulla Al Hashmi, COO of Parks & Zones, DP World, UAE Region, and Vir Kotak, Founder of BoxcoWorld.

DP World is an multinational logistics company specialising in cargo logistics, port terminal operations, maritime services and free trade zones. BoxcoWorld FZE specialises in comprehensive multimodal logistics solutions. It has presence in Ahmedabad, Amsterdam, Delhi, Dubai, Houston Mumbai and Singapore; and is planning to increase warehousing presence in GCC countries (especially Saudi Arabia and Oman), East Africa and the United States.

Explaining how Boxco aims to use Dubai’s logistical advantages to enhance Indian firms’ access to international markets, Kotak says the proposed facility will “serve as an ideal destination” for Indian firms to efficiently manage their import and export cargo with minimal delays when connecting to and from vessels. He asserts the company’s warehousing investment in the UAE (and other GCC countries) will greatly help rice, white goods and polymer exporters from India. “These warehouses would act as distribution centres for these exporters to the whole of the GCC region. We will also be able to leverage the recent free trade agreement between India and the UAE, which will help to boost bilateral trade between the countries. One of the G20 summit outcomes was the announcement of the India-Middle East-Europe economic corridor, which will provide a reliable and cost-effective ship-to-rail transit network between India, the Middle East and Europe. As a result, there is a tremendous boost to the potential robustness of trade in the region.”

The proposed industrial bloc, which will have a throughput of approximately 15,000 TEUs, will also offer sorting and repackaging services for imported waste paper, primarily from the USA and Europe. The waste paper will be re-exported to markets in the Indian subcontinent and Far East Asian regions after sorting and repackaging. It will also have 40,000 cubic metres of robotic racking system for polymers — the first of its kind in the GCC. Robotic racking enables optimisation of warehousing space.

Boxco says the facility will foster closer relationships with clients, enabling the company to gain a deeper understanding of specific customer needs and challenges in the import, export and trading sectors.The UAE is a hub for re-export and transhipment. JAFZA plays a key role in trade in this region as it houses over 9,000 companies from around the world, and serves over 3.5 billion people globally by connecting directly to 150 ports. The zone is well-connected to the Al Maktoum International Airport and Jebel Ali Port, ensuring efficient transportation of goods.

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