With the signing of MoUs with majors in Malaysia, where it plans to set up a container port and an integrated maritime city, the $12 billion Adani Group, on Monday, hinted at an ambitious global expansion.

Its port arm, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ), India’s biggest private port operating firm, will begin a feasibility study on building a green-field multi-purpose port mainly for handling containers at Carey Island in Malaysia’s Selangor State, about 50 km southwest of its capital, Kuala Lumpur.

The feasibility on developing a mega container handling port project on Carey Island as an extension of the existing Port Klang has been flagged off with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between APSEZ and MMC Port Holdings Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned unit of MMC Corporation Berhad (MMC), one of Malaysia’s top utilities and infrastructure group with diversified businesses ranging from ports and logistics, energy and utilities and engineering and construction.

“Malaysia is very strategic to APSEZ global strategy and with Straits of Malacca being a global shipping route. It helps us to drive our global transhipment strategy further. With Vizhinjam port in Kerala, on one side, and Carey Island port, on the other, we will be able to give transhipment solutions to global shipping lines. Malaysia with its supportive, transparent and proactive government policies makes it ideal destination for investment. MMC and Sime Darby are valued partners and with their involvement in these projects strengthens the case even more to make both these projects successful,” said Karan Adani, CEO, APSEZ, in a statement released in Ahmedabad and Kuala Lumpur, on Monday.

Simultaneously, MMC Port Holdings, Sime Darby Property Berhad, and APSEZ have signed a separate MoU to study the feasibility of developing an integrated maritime city on CareyIsland to support the planned new port.

The MoU was signed by MMC Port Director Dato' Sri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh, Sime Darby Property Managing Director Dato’ Jauhari Hamidi and APSEZ’s President of Business Development, Capt. Sandeep Mehta.

Malaysia, South-East Asia’s third largest economy, is looking to boost investments and growth through liberalisation. The overall infrastructure of Malaysia is one of the most developed inAsia and competes with some of the best developing countries of the world.

Under the one-year MoU, MMC Port, Sime Darby Property and Adani Ports will collaborate and undertake the feasibility study for the Carey Island Port Project and the supporting integrated maritime city.

“The port and maritime city could spur the development of southern Selangor’s industrial belt further and Sime Darby is well positioned to support this vision,” said the President and Group Chief Executive, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Mohd Bakke Salleh.

MMC Port Holdings is Malaysia’s largest port operating group which currently runs 5 terminals and has a 20% stake in Red Sea Gateway terminal in Jeddah. MMC Port also operates two big logistics companies, Kontena Nasional and JP Logistics.

Sime Darby Property is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sime Darby Berhad, a Malaysia-based diversified multinational involved in key growth sectors such as plantation, industrial equipment, motors, property and logistics. Sime Darby Property is involved in property development, property investment and asset management, hospitality and leisure, with assets in Malaysia, Australia, Singapore, Vietnam and the United Kingdom.

Apart from developing and running India’s biggest private port at Mundra, in Kutch district of Gujarat, APSEZ is also the country’s biggest container handler outside state control. The firm operates container handling facilities at its flagship port of Mundra and also at Hazira, both inGujarat, and at Kattupalli near Chennai in Tamil Nadu.

APSEZ will soon start operating a new container handling facility it has built at Kamarajar Portat Ennore near Chennai. The firm is also building a mega container transhipment port at Vizhinjam in Kerala.