MOGADISHU, March 2 (Xinhua) -- Somalia on Friday denounced the port deal which was announced on Monday by the break-away region of Somaliland and United Arab Emirates (UAE)'s DP World to grant Ethiopia 19 percent shareholding in Berbera Port, terming the agreement unconstitutional.
The Ministry of Ports and Marine Transport said in a statement that the government was not party to the agreement which it termed as defective.
"This so-called agreement is both defective and detrimental to the sovereignty of the Federal Republic of Somalia and the unity of the country," the Ministry said.
The UAE-owned DP World and Somaliland alongside Ethiopia Thursday signed the shareholding agreement in Dubai that would see the neighboring Ethiopia which is landlocked get a stake in the management of the port.
"DP World will hold a 51 percent stake in the project, Somaliland 30 percent and Ethiopia the remaining 19 percent," DP World said in a statement on Thursday.
"The government of Ethiopia will also invest in infrastructure to develop the Berbera Corridor as a trade gateway for the inland country, which is one of the fastest growing countries in the world." it said.
But the Somali government said the terms of the procedure are in blatant breach of the Provisional Constitution Somalia. "The Ministry therefore, considering the above factors declares this deal as non-existent, null and void."
Somaliland parliament approved the Berbera Port deal with DP World in late 2016 paving way for the Emirati ports operator to inject 442 million U.S. dollars to rebuild the port and manage it through a concession for 30 years.
A subsidiary of DP World, P&O Ports secured a 30-year concession to manage the port of Bosaso in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland last year. The concession was billed at 339 million dollars.