APM Terminals has opened the new Vado Gateway Container terminal in northern Italy which is “set to transform logistics” in the region, according to a company release.
The new Vado Gateway was officially launched on 12 December and is the result of a €450 million investment.
APM Terminals, with a share of 50.1%, has invested €180 million in the project and a further €43 million has been provided by project financing. Chinese Partners Cosco Shipping Ports have a 40% share and Qingdao Port International a 9.9% share.
The terminal was commissioned by Autorità di Sistema Portuale del Mar Ligure Occidentale (Western Ligurian Sea System Port Authority), which will now entrust APM Terminals with the management of the facility for the next 50 years.
The new terminal has already secured two important services operated by A.P. Moller-Maersk. Starting in February 2020, vessels on Maersk’s ME2 service, connecting the Mediterranean to the Middle East and India, and MMX service, connecting the Mediterranean to North America, will call Vado Gateway.
In addition to the newly opened facility, APM Terminals Vado Ligure also operates the adjacent Vado Ligure Reefer Terminal, the largest logistic hub in the Mediterranean dedicated to fruit. Once fully operating, Vado Gateway capacity will amount to circa 900,000 TEUs per year, which, together with the 250,000 TEUs of the Reefer Terminal, will allow the Port of Vado to handle over one million TEUs every year.
Vado Gateway is a semi-automated terminal, which significantly increases the competitiveness of the Ligurian and Italian port infrastructure. It will initially operate on a 450m part of the quay, but from July 2020 its whole 700m extension will be available for use.
The yard used for container storage and handling is the first in Italy to be completely automated. Automatic Rail Mounted Gantry (ARMG) cranes will work autonomously under the remote supervision of specialized operators.
Another important feature highlighted by APM Terminals is the intermodal connection potential. APM Terminals’ target is to move 40% of containers arriving to or departing from Vado Gateway by rail, taking advantage of the rail infrastructure which is currently under development in Vado. Initially, around 4-5 trains will connect Vado with several intermodal hubs in the North and East of the country, including Milano and Padova, but the number is forecast to increase over time.