NAVAL PRESENCE: The US naval base in Bahrain is set for a $580m upgrade. (Getty Images - for illustrative purposes only)
Work has begun on a $580 million US Military Port in Bahrain and the project is expected to be completed in 2015.
The project will see $250 million pumped into Bahrain's private sector, US Ambassador Adam Ereli said at a groundbreaking ceremony yesterday.
It constitutes a major expansion of the US Navy's presence in Bahrain and is located at the old Mina Salman Docks.
"The total cost of the project is $580 million, wherein a large part of it will be invested in Bahrain and go to Bahraini companies," said Ereli, calling it an "historic" occasion.
"20% of this would go to the construction sector, which would make up around $100m, while $150m would be devoted to purchasing construction goods and materials within Bahrain itself."
The US Navy's 5th Fleet is headquartered in Bahrain and the new port will handle American and allied warships operating throughout the region.
"The relocation of the new US Naval pier will create thousands of job opportunities in Bahrain, using Bahraini advisers, consultants, and employees," added Ereli.