Freeport, Malta (PortSEurope) May 14, 2019 – Malta Freeport has said that the shipping companies Maersk and MSC plan to reduce their operations at Freeport, relocating to a new fully-automated facility in Tangier Med, Morocco, and to Egypt’s Port Said.
The Freeport container terminal could see business reduced by up to 35%. The Freeport’s management has already informed unions and other clients, and new clients have already accounted for 10% of the reduction.
Maersk commented that it will retain a presence in Malta through services covering South America and Northern Europe and, furthermore, the Freeport will be significantly increasing its handling of services operated by France’s the CMA CGM container shipping company.
In January this year, Malta Freeport Terminals Limited today showcased a huge €31 million investment in new equipment and infrastructural works during a visit by Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi. He was shown 15 newly-acquired Kone Rubber-Tyred Gantry Cranes (RTGs) as well as other yard equipment including 67 new tractors and trailers that have all been ordered over the past 12 months.
Speaking at a joint press conference with the minister, Malta Freeport Terminals CEO Alex Montebello said: “This investment comes at a time when the Terminals are operating at elevated capacity in a difficult and highly competitive environment.
Despite these challenges, the Freeport once again broke records again in terms of throughput in 2018, handling 3.31 million TEU containers. This is also thanks to the dedication of our committed personnel – without whom the results we’ve registered would not have been possible.
“Since we are already operating at high capacity, the next step is to ensure our terminals are able to accommodate four million containers. We are seeking to achieve this objective in a number of ways, including extending the Terminal Two North Quay which is currently at tendering stage.
The Freeport currently handles 20 weekly mainline services, providing network links to 130 ports around the world, and received more than 2,200 vessels over the past 12 months.
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