A container terminal at the Croatian Port of Rijeka is set to undergo expansion that will enable the facility to handle vessels with a capacity of up to 20,000 TEU.

Adriatic Gate Container Terminal (AGCT), a subsidiary of International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI), is expected to realize the expansion plan by mid-2020.

In close cooperation with the Rijeka Port Authority, AGCT has drawn up plans for a two-phase dredging scheme with the first phase fully-approved. This phase entails the dredging of 130 meters of quay over the berths 1 and 2.

The project will facilitate the berthing of vessels with a length overall (LOA) of up to 400 meters. The work will provide 438 meters of berth with a depth of 15 meters.

As informed, financing for the infrastructure works has been provided by the EU and PRA, with ICTSI undertaking all the associated necessary investment in quayside and landside handling systems, as well as the increased coverage of the terminal’s IT systems.

Moreover, the second phase foresees additional dredging alongside the 438 meters of quay to a depth of 16.5 meters. Once completed, this project will make AGCT the first terminal in the northern Adriatic able to berth giant vessels of up to 20,000 TEUs.

“We have decided to do this against a background of steady demand but, more importantly, to keep pace with the requirements of our clients in terms of both ship size and a rise in intermodal rail activity,” Wojciech Szymulewicz, AGCT chief executive officer, said.

“The capacity expansion will also deliver an overall boost to efficiency levels at the terminal,” he added.

Complementing these initiatives are new super Post-Panamax cranes with an outreach of at least 24 rows, as part of the berth upgrade, and new rubber tyred gantries (RTGs) and prime movers introduced on the landside.

Work is also now advanced on upgrading AGCT’s on-dock rail terminal to offer an annual capacity of 360,000 TEUs per year. The upgrade will be completed in the last quarter of 2019.

Total terminal yard capacity will increase to up to 600,000 TEUs per year in line with demand, according to ICTSI.

“While the volume through AGCT has risen modestly year on year, the expansion program will future proof the terminal in terms of both providing new volume capacity for the longer term and meeting new system requirements, notably accommodating bigger vessels and boosting the intermodal rail capability,” Hans-Ole Madsen, ICTSI Senior Vice President and Regional Head of Europe-Middle East-Africa, commented.

“The program has involved close client liaison and study of all relevant market factors, and we are confident AGCT will meet the needs of container lines calling Rijeka and of cargo owners for the foreseeable future,” he concluded.

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