Lithuanian port completes year-long project to allow safe transit of post-Panamax vessels
Klaipeda Port is this month celebrating the completion of dredging works at the port’s navigation channel to shift the port “to a new qualitative level”.
The Capital Dredging and Widening of Klaipeda State Seaport Navigation Channel, carried out by Dutch-based firm Van Oord Dredging and Marine Contractors BV, took a year to complete and cost approximately €37 million, with the EU providing as much as €24 million in funds towards the dredging programme.
“I am pleased to admit that it is the biggest in scale, scope and value contract in the port’s history,” said Klaipeda Port’s director general, Arvydas Vaitkus.
“Moreover, of special gratitude is the fact that our contractor accomplished the works in due time.”
The project, which involved the removal of 4.432 million cubic metres of material, increased the width of Klaipeda’s navigation channel to 150 metres and the depth up to 14.5 metres.
The new parameters will enable the Lithuanian port, one of the few ice-free ports in northernmost Europe, to receive longer and wider post-Panamax vessels measuring up to 310 metres in length, 40 metres in beam, and with a maximum draught of up to 13.4 metres.