The entry of the Chinese state-owned company Cosco at a Hamburg container terminal is about to be completed.
Concrete conditions for participation had been agreed upon in discussions between Hamburger Hafen und Logistik (HHLA), the Federal Ministry of Economics, and Cosco Shipping Ports Limited (CSPL), according to HHLA on Friday.
An HHLA spokesperson added that the final details still have to be clarified, but the transaction should be finalised “soon”. The details have not been given as “the parties have agreed not to disclose the contents of the agreement”.
Despite the controversy surrounding the deal, the German federal government allowed CSPL to purchase a 24.9% stake in the Container Terminal Tollerot (CTT) one of three terminals owned by HHLA, a company in which the local Hamburg government has a majority stake.
The Hong Kong-listed terminal operator had planned to take a 35% stake in CTT, but the deal fell through after several ministries expressed concerns about critical infrastructure falling into foreign hands.
HHLA stressed that neither CTT, the company, nor the Port of Hamburg would be sold to China, adding that it would remain an independent, listed company with the City of Hamburg as its most important shareholder. Cosco is not expected to gain any exclusive rights to the terminal or access to strategic know-how.