Portsmouth Commercial Port in the UK is looking to strengthen its credentials as a reefer, project and general cargo market leader following plans by its affiliate MMD Shipping Services to launch a regeneration project to meet changes in the industry
Long-term contracts with shipping companies have been secured, and now the nation’s leading importer of fresh produce into the UK needs to accommodate the demands of new business on its 22-acre city-centre site.
Improvements include removing warehouses and creating space for up to 1,200 additional container spaces and an additional 250 reefer points, doubling the terminal’s current capacity and responding to changes in the industry over the way goods and produce are delivered.
Efficient handling of goods will create spare berth capacity, providing the ability to manage additional ships. It will also mean existing customers will benefit from an improved service.
MMD can currently handle ships up to 220m in length, with the capacity for depth alongside at 9.8m lws. These improvements will create additional storage space and open up the quay.
Mike Sellers, MMD director said: “This is an exciting time for the future of MMD. We’re investing in the business in response to the changing needs of our customers and the market more generally.
“This significant development will provide long term sustainability for MMD.
“The recent 10-year agreement with global wind turbine manufacturer MHI Vestas demonstrates the positive work already underway.
“Fresh produce will remain our core business, but the additional improvements will provide more capacity for general cargo.
“This redevelopment plan is a bold move and sends a clear signal that we’re committed to providing the very best level of service.”
MMD Shipping Services is working on a 20 year masterplan to help achieve the company’s potential and make sure improvements are future proof for the long-term.
The development will provide additional space, next to the quayside, proving capability to store cargo from containers, steel, timber, project cargo and palletised cargo.
Work will get underway in June and will take approximately six months.
The 10-year deal with MHI Vestas won in April this year compensates for the loss of Geest Line’s conventional fruit business to Dover. MMD collects 80m long offshore turbine blades from a new painting line in Fawley, Hampshire and prepares and loads them for shipping.