Tag Archives: Ports

Djibouti: From Island of Stability to Agent of Chaos?

Djibouti’s regional monopoly and economic leverage are coming under threat from “peace” between Eritrea and its only client Ethiopia. Could Guelleh and his government have any other choice than playing the villain?


For the past decade, Djibouti has been a tiny haven in the Horn of Africa, mostly free from the tension simmering elsewhere in the region. This has produced an influx of investment that has turned Djibouti into one of Africa’s most important trade and military hubs. Continue reading Djibouti: From Island of Stability to Agent of Chaos?

Djibouti Goes from Position of Strength to Potential Downfall

Serious questions about its reliability as an investment destination are surfacing following its illegal seizure of a DP World port and its noncompliance with international court arbitration decisions.


It has been a trying few weeks for Ismaïl Omar Guelleh, president of Djibouti, at a time when most other residents of the Horn of Africa are celebrating emerging peace and, with it, the glimmer of prosperity. Continue reading Djibouti Goes from Position of Strength to Potential Downfall

China Unveils $3.5 bln Djibouti Free Trade Zone

Djibouti launches Africa’s largest Free Trade Zone and opens to global trade.


Djibouti commissioned a $3.5 billion, Chinese-built free trade zone on Thursday, deepening ties with the Asian giant and helping the Horn of Africa nation generate more jobs for its youths.

Djibouti, with a population of 876,000, already hosts Chinese, U.S., and French naval bases and it also handles roughly 95 percent of the goods imported by Ethiopia, its land-locked neighbor with 100 million people. Continue reading China Unveils $3.5 bln Djibouti Free Trade Zone

Djibouti: Attractive but Risky

Growing corruption, over-dependence on Ethiopia, mounting levels of public debt and competition from regional ports made Djibouti a risky place for longterm investment.


As countries across the Horn of Africa embark on ambitious programs to attract foreign investment, Djibouti seems a stable option in a volatile region. But there are risks, according to a new report by political and security risk consultancy Allan & Associates. Continue reading Djibouti: Attractive but Risky

In Djibouti, “China Begins to Become Disillusioned”

Six months after the inauguration of its first military base in Africa, Beijing has expressed its “displeasure” to the president of Djibouti

Less than silky relations. What happens to the special and strategic partnership? What is driving China’s exasperation to its peak?


In November 2017, Djibouti’s President, Ismail Omar Guelleh, was received in Beijing with great fanfare by the Chinese president. But behind the official statements and the signing of a “strategic partnership”, Xi Jinping also recalled that Chinese investments in Djibouti were a source of concern for his Government. Continue reading In Djibouti, “China Begins to Become Disillusioned”

Djibouti – The Superpowers’ Playground

“We don’t have anything else but location” – Djibouti

By The Economist,

AT 2pm in the tiny African state of Djibouti everything stops. As the sun burns high in the sky people retreat to their homes, save for a few men lying in the shade of colonial-era walkways, chewing qat leaves that bring on a hazy high. In the soporific heat you would be forgiven for thinking that time had forgotten the New Jersey-sized nation. Yet its quiet stability within the volatile Horn of Africa has made the country of just 875,000 people a hub for the world’s superpowers. Continue reading Djibouti – The Superpowers’ Playground

How Eritrea Benefits from the Diplomatic Crisis Between Djibouti and UAE

Eritrea, Djibouti’s longstanding nightmare, is quietly capitalizing on Djibouti’s diplomatic fall out with Abu Dhabi (and by extension with Saudi Arabia) by upsetting the long standing alliances in the region

By African Intelligence,

FOLLOWING the altercation in Djibouti on 27 April between Wahib Moussa Kalinleh, the commander of Forces aériennes djiboutiennes (FAD – Djibouti air force), and Ali Al Shihi, Vice Consul of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Djibouti and the UAE broke off diplomatic relations on 4 May, 2015.  Continue reading How Eritrea Benefits from the Diplomatic Crisis Between Djibouti and UAE

Djibouti: Playing the Great Game

This article discusses on the resurgent political opposition in Djibouti and also questions on the legitimacy of Guelleh’s diplomatic role as “Landlord-in-chief” for the world’s militaries. Despite reports of ill health, Guelleh has maintained control of domestic politics in Djibouti, banning the Mouvement pour la Développement et la Liberté because of Islamist policies and partnering with Ethiopia to prevent the rise of a Somalia kind Islamist insurgency.

By The African Report,

Twenty-five years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, there is a new arena for high- stakes diplomatic rivalries – Djibouti in the Horn of Africa.

Some of the most powerful militaries in the world – China, France, Japan, Russia and the US – glower at each other across Djibouti’s Gulf of Tadjoura.

Overlooking the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, the gateway to the world’s busiest shipping lanes in the Indian Ocean, Djibouti has an unrivalled position. Continue reading Djibouti: Playing the Great Game