Neom suffers another setback with delay to $10 billion transport venture

The Line, NEOM
The Line is a key part of the Neom project. NEOM
  • Neom's $10 billion joint venture with DSV has been delayed over missing regulatory approvals.

  • The partnership was due to start in the second quarter of this year, per ShippingWatch.

  • Despite the setback, DSV says it remains committed to the Neom partnership.

Saudi Arabia's Neom megaproject appears to have hit another stumbling block.

Neom's $10 billion joint venture with Danish transport company DSV has been delayed over missing regulatory approvals, per reports.

The partnership was due to start in the second quarter of this year, but the company told ShippingWatch that the deal had been pushed back.

"Neom is an extensive project in which DSV will be part of a joint venture for the overall logistics solutions. As we have previously stated, it requires a number of regulatory approvals, which unfortunately are taking longer to obtain than we had hoped," a DSV representative told the outlet.

The freight company is still waiting for regulatory approvals from both Saudi Arabia and Egypt, Bloomberg reported.

However, the DSV representative told ShippingWatch that its "long-term expectations" for cooperation remained unchanged, adding that delays were routine for a project of this scope.

The logistics company said it was undertaking transportation services for Neom "while we wait for our joint venture to come into place. Therefore, we are ready to scale up our efforts when the approvals come."

Representatives for DSV and Neom did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Business Insider.

Neom has suffered a series of setbacks in recent months.

In April, Bloomberg reported that population estimates for Neom's flagship project called The Line had been reduced amid concerns over finances.

The cost of the project has reportedly ballooned past estimates, with some reports putting the estimated cost for the futuristic megacity at $1.5 trillion.

Experts have said the kingdom is struggling to attract the foreign investment needed for the expensive plans.

Saudi officials have been keen to counter the narrative that plans for the futuristic megacity have been scaled back. In private, though, recent reports suggest that the Crown Prince is open to having "tough conversations" about his Vision 2030 ambitions.

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