Italian business interests are reportedly prepared to invest up to US$100M to build a new cargo handling terminal at Georgia’s Black Sea port of Poti. According to Pino Musolino, president of the North Adriatic Seaport Authority (Venice Porto Marghera and Chioggia), the project is aimed at expanding the port’s annual handling capacity by 50 Mtpa.
Georgia, he said, is a natural Caucasian bridge between Europe and Central Asia, with immense transit potential and Poti is strategically located.Meanwhile, APM Terminals has stated that the Georgian port is capable of handling up to 2M TEU/year. It has announced plans to build two new 16m deep berths capable of accommodating 9,000 TEU ships and handling 1M TEU/year.
The phase 1 investment ticket is US$250M. The company has already invested more than US$70M in upgrading and expanding Poti’s facilities and infrastructure since 2011, when it took over an 80% stake in the port from UAE’s Rakia Investments.With 15 berths totalling 2,900m, more than 20 quay cranes and 17 km of rail tracks, APM Terminals Poti is Georgia’s largest port terminal, responsible for handling 80% of the country’s overall container traffic. Of the container cargo handled at Poti, 60% is o/d Azerbaijan, Armenia and Central Asian locations.