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Published: 14 March 2017
Antwerp – new tender for ex-Opel site?
The 88-ha former GM/Opel site in Antwerp might return on the market for open bidding
The Port of Antwerp has issued Energy Recovery Systems (ERS) with a May 8th deadline to fulfil a number of conditions if the Saudi Arabian company is to be allowed to proceed with its planned waste-to-chemicals plant on the site of the former car plant.
“This file needs serious reinforcement," stated the port authority Board. To date no Belgian entity has been established, in addition to various other mutually agreed milestones not having been met yet. The port authority expects a final file by 8th May.
Already the port is preparing a new tender procedure in order for it to be launched immediately if the ERS-project falls through. The aim still is to let the entire 88-hectare site to one single industrial player offering sufficient labour perspectives and added value.
The Saudi company was granted the option on the site early 2016. ERS has however since failed to convince the port authority on the feasibility of its waste-to-chemicals project. Its scepticism was backed by a PWC report from May 2016. As ERS was then granted "the coming months" to provide an acceptable business plan, the project clearly is in "additional extra time" now.
The former GM/Opel motorcar production plant sits on the north bank of the Churchilldok. This is one of the basins along the non-tidal Kanaaldok (Canal Dock), which also includes the former MSC/PSA Delwaidedok container terminal.