DP World Antwerp is about to embark on an investment programme estimated at €197M in its Antwerp Gateway terminal at the Deurganckdok, with the aim of increasing installed capacity from 2.5M TEU today to 3.4M TEU by 2023
Most of the money will go on new equipment, including STS gantry cranes, RMGs, ASCs and straddle carriers, although no numbers have been revealed. New real estate in the programme features a new €10M operational building and enlarging the garage and workshop of the technical department, the operator told worldcargonews online.
Tendering for the equipment packages is in progress, and no potential vendors’ names have been disclosed. However, it is understood that the new ASCs and straddle carriers will be replacements for machines in the existing park as well as fleet expansion, but they will not serve any new lanes or stacks. The additional capacity will entail hiring more straddle carrier drivers and technical staff.
Terminal layout expansion, be this quayside or stacking space, is not an option as things stand. Antwerp Gateway Terminal has an overflow at the MPET (MSC-PSA) terminal on the south side, near the new Deurganckdok Kieldrechtsluis lock. What little potential ground could yet be acquired from the neighbouring Ashland Chemical facility is not at grade with the container terminal surface.
“In the ideal scenario we see extra space to expand the terminal, but due to lack of space we are fully committed to further optimisation," said CEO Rob Harrison. The 36% capacity increase to 3.4M TEU sought by 2023 will, therefore ,mostly have to come from within the current boundaries.
However, DP World Antwerp has revealed that it is asking Antwerp port authority for additional space for expansion, “with no specific concession in mind.” The port authority is in a difficult position, because of the problems it has run into with the proposed Saeftinghedok development.
DP World Antwerp added that it is also seeking to make the most of digitisation. "By focusing on blockchains and initiatives such as NxtPort and Imec, we want to bring the logistics chain back to cruising speed,” it stated. “We will soon also launch new applications that provide more transparency for the end user. By using data in new applications we want to support smart trade solutions instead of offering only physical infrastructure. We believe that digitization will be the next building block in further developing Antwerp as a global leading port.”