With 7.66 million standard containers (TEU) in 2000, German container company EUROGATE and Contship Italia, which is 66.6 percent owned by EUROKAI and 33.4 percent owned by EUROGATE, have recorded an increase in growth of 20.5 percent over 1999, above the general market growth rate of 7.5 percent.
EUROGATE and Contship Italia form a European terminal and transport network which holds third place in the world, ranking after Hutchinson Port Holdings (HPH), Hong Kong, and the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA), according to EUROGATE representatives.
The Eurogate network includes the Italian terminals in Gioia Tauro and La Spezia. The strongest terminal in the Mediterranean region is Gioia Tauro, where container handling rose 17.7 per cent to 2.65 million TEU in 2000. La Spezia’s container terminal reached a volume of 781, 000 TEU in 2000, a growth rate of 8.5 per cent. The strongest growth in 2000, however, came at Atlantic location Lisbon, Portugal, with 28.1 per cent.
The German North Sea coast terminal locations of Bremerhaven and Hamburg also experienced major growth, with Bremerhaven recording the strongest growth rates in northern Europe for the third year in succession.
After 20.3 percent growth in 1999 it attained an increase of 25.8 percent to a total volume of 2.7 million TEU last year. The development in Bremerhaven is closely tied to NTB North Sea Terminal Bremerhaven, a joint venture of EUROGATE and Maersk Germany. NTB independently operates three berths at the northern end of the Bremerhaven Container Terminal. The regular services provided by MAERSK SEALAND are primarily handled there.
The strong growth in Bremerhaven will require rapid expansion of terminal capacity. Eight new gantry cranes with a Super-Post-Panmax format are now available at the quay in Bremerhaven. The first four were delivered at the end of 2000 and are already in service. Four additional units were delivered in May and will start up operation soon. The cranes have a reach of 60 meters and can thus span 22 rows of containers. The largest carriers in the world currently sail with 17 rows of containers across their width.
In Hamburg, there was an increase in growth of 22.4 percent in 2000 at the EUROGATE container terminal and a cargo handling result of 1.34 million TEU. The entire Port of Hamburg recorded growth of 13.6 percent, while EUROGATE’s market share of container handling business there has risen to 31.5 percent. Therefore, the EUROGATE capacity has to be expanded swiftly in Hamburg as well. Options include investments in new cranes and van carriers, deeping of the river channel, and new terminal capacities, for example at Wilhelmshaven, the confirmed site of a possible future deepwater port.
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