The Port of Rotterdam Authority has suspended the tender procedure for unmanned transport on the Container Exchange Route (CER).
In a statement, the Authority said there are “too many risks and uncertainties” standing in the way of a development of “a sufficiently competitive product” and that it will consult with all parties about how the CER can be used for manned container transport.
However, it also insisted the suspension does not mean there are no suitable parties for the required technology. The tender procedure did produce a technically feasible proposal from a supplier of autonomous vehicles, however, the complexity of the project does not relate “solely to what is technically possible”.
“The Port of Rotterdam Authority believes that there are openings and prospects for fully autonomous transport from stack to stack in the future and it will continue to consult with potential suppliers and stakeholders to see how to achieve that goal in due course,” it said in a statement.
The Authority launched the tender process in June 2020 and had expected to choose a winning applicant in Q1 2021.
Plans for the CER include a 17km track that can be used for the efficient transport of containers between different locations in the Port to improve efficiency and the flow of containerised traffic.