JERUSALEM: Israel said on Thursday it would sell Haifa PortA major trade center on its Mediterranean coast, for the winning bidders Adani Ports India and local chemicals and logistics group Gadot for 4.1 billion shekels ($1.18 billion).
gadot and adani This has brought it to the end of a two-year tender process that Israel hopes will lower import prices and help reduce the notoriously long wait times at Israeli ports.
“The privatization of the port of Haifa will increase competition at the ports and reduce the cost of living,” Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman said.
According to an industry official, Gadot will hold 70% stake and Adani will hold the remaining 30%. Neither company was immediately available for comment.
Adani Ports, which has said it is the largest transportation utility in India, is targeting expansion and wants to become the leading global port conglomerate, Karan Adani, the company’s chief executive officer, told an earnings call in May.
The new owners will compete with a private port that opened the bay last year, which is operated by Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG).
About 98% of all goods move into and out of Israel over the sea and the government is upgrading the region to keep up with economic growth.
Growing ties with neighboring Arab countries are also creating new business opportunities for Israel and Haifa is well poised to become a regional hub.
Haifa Port said the new group would operate the port until 2054 and that the winning bid was “exceeding expectation”.
“Following a complex process, we were able to ensure the future of Haifa Port and its ability to compete in the years to come,” said President Eshel Armoni.