A £1.5 billion deep water port being built in south Essex will open in two years' time and create a further 1,000 jobs in the coming months, it was announced today.

Developer DP World, the ports arm of Dubai World, said the site on the Thames estuary at Coryton, will be ready by the fourth quarter of 2013 and that it is poised to hire some 700 construction workers and 300 port staff.

Work started in January 2010 at the site with around 600 people already involved in the project.

Overall it is expected to create 36,000 jobs - 12,000 in the short term - and potentially boost the UK's economy by £3.2 billion a year.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "The opening of London Gateway in just two years' time will transform the UK's maritime port infrastructure and play an important role in helping Britain's economy grow in coming years.

"It will help Britain maintain its competitiveness, drive, productivity, and, crucially, strengthen our links with Asia and beyond.

"The announcement of these 1,000 new jobs today is a welcome boost to the UK."