PORTS operator giant International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) said it recently received a third partial repayment from the Sudanese government in relation to the canceled port concession.
“After further discussions with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning of the Republic of the Sudan, ICTSI has received a third partial repayment of the upfront fee from the Sudanese government in the amount of €967,000 (equivalent to approximately $1 million),” the company said in a disclosure to the stock exchange on Dec. 2.
The Enrique K. Razon, Jr.-led company also said that “positive engagement” with the relevant Sudanese ministries continues in relation to the refund of the remaining balance of the upfront fee.
In 2019, ICTSI, through its wholly owned subsidiary ICTSI Middle East DMCC, signed a concession agreement with Sea Ports Corporation of Sudan to operate, manage, and develop the South Port Container Terminal at the Port of Sudan for 20 years.
Under the deal, ICTSI was required to pay an upfront fee of €530 million in installments of €410.0 million ($467.2 million) and five other installments each in the amount of €24 million ($27.3 million) from the third to the seventh operation year; fixed monthly fee; and royalty fee during the concession period.
ICTSI had paid the initial installment of an upfront fee of €410 million ($470.2 million).
However, the Sudanese government failed to turn over the port to ICTSI on or before April 7, 2019, mainly due to political instability, according to ICTSI.
“The Ministry sent ICTSI a letter confirming the remittance of €195.2 million ($219.1 million) as partial repayment of the upfront fee under the terms of the refund bond and that the balance will be repaid as soon as possible,” the company said in a disclosure.
ICTSI received from the Sudanese government a second partial repayment of the upfront fee in the sum of €26.8 million (or $29.8 million) in December 2019.
ICTSI shares closed 1.68% lower at P193.50 apiece on Dec. 2. — Arjay L. Balinbin