Mega-Ship Matters: Optimal Terminal Performance

Authorship

Harry Nguyen, CEO, RBS, Australia

Publication

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In 2015, the largest ship had a capacity of 19,200 TEU, but larger ships with up to 21,100 TEU are to be built in coming years. The race for mega-ships is moving on and terminals must adapt to handle such megaships. Economies of scale are dependent on mega-ships being loaded at near full capacity with minimum time at port and more time at sea. This creates real challenges to terminals.

Port operators have to invest heavily in infrastructure to attract and handle the new mega-ships. Terminals need larger cranes, longer and deeper berths, and higher levels of crane productivity, as well as more yard space, the ability to handle more trucks, railcars and barges to move containers in and out of terminals. And even more challenging, mega-ships are enforcing peak traffic to the terminal by bringing and demanding more cargo in a short period of time.

Other parties in the supply chain must also link up with ports in the most effective way so the huge number of containers that can be unloaded and loaded from mega-ships can be handled adequately. Apart from terminal infrastructure needing to be built to accommodate mega-ships the remaining challenge is how this can be managed to fully optimise the cost…

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