MSC plans to expand Antwerp operations

  • Antwerp Port Authority to issue EOI for expansion of Deurganck Dock

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), the world’s second largest shipping company, has announced that it plans to expand its activities in the Belgian Port of Antwerp.

The Antwerp Port Authority will call for an expression of interest (EOI), after it was approved by its board of directors, on the Swiss shipping company’s behalf for the expansion of container operations at Deurganck Dock.

MSC, currently the largest of Antwerp’s container-based customers, operates out of the port’s Delwaide Dock where it handled as much as 4.6 million TEU last year. However, the terminal, located on the banks of the River Scheldt, does not have adequate room for growth. Antwerp has been selected as one of the main ports of call for the P3 Network, the operational alliance between Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM scheduled to start in the second quarter of next year, and further room for expansion is a must if it is to continue to respond to the demands of the world’s three biggest ocean carriers.

MSC aims to expand the capacity of the PSA Terminal at Deurganck Dock to handle its own cargo as well as P3 freight. This has been prompted not only by the lack of capacity on the right bank but also by the fact that the company will start using ships of 16,000 and 18,000 TEU in the near future.

Based on the results of the invitation, further discussions will be held with the stakeholders, according to the opportunities for accommodation.

The Port Authority will also examine the possibilities that might arise for using the Delwaide Dock in future if MSC does indeed move, subject to a formal invitation for expressions of interest at a later date.

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