APM Terminals has bought Vado Ligure reefer terminal on Italy’s Ligurian coast – the largest refrigerated terminal in the Mediterranean.
Purchased from owner Reefer Terminal as part of a port of Vado masterplan to create new supply chains to markets in northern Italy, southern France, Switzerland and Bavaria.
The reefer terminal is adjacent to the construction site of APMT’s Vado deepwater semi-automated container terminal project, which will open in January 2018 with 800,000 teu annual capacity and 17 m depth. Ligure will be upgraded and operated as a single unit.
Terms and price of the purchase were not disclosed, but Reefer Terminal will continue to operate the facility, which specialises in the discharge and warehousing of fresh fruit and vegetables.
The Ligurian coast is a major entry point for refrigerated, palletised fresh fruit into northern Italy and Vado Ligure handles about 600,000 pallets per year at its 510 reefer plugs, and also handles ordinary containers – 275,000 teu – and general cargoes across its 465 m of quay with an alongside depth of 14.5 m.
Speaking to IHS Maritime, APMT Vado CEO Carlo Merli said, “In our vision, the reefer terminal will complement our new container terminal, offering a different service, mainly for short-sea shipping, which means we won’t need to dredge it.
“The main upgrade will be to link its four rail tracks to the off-dock rail facility being constructed as part of our new container terminal, giving direct access to interior destinations through an environmentally advantageous intermodal rail service. We anticipate spending about EUR10 million on Vado Ligure over the next two to three years.
“As for the new container terminal, it too needs practically no dredging as it has naturally deep water and 17 m alongside depth,” Merli continued. “When it opens, it will have a 20 ha yard, 700 m of quay and, for the first year of operations, four ship-to-shore cranes with 23-row outreach – with a fifth to be added depending on growth, but probably by 2020.
“On opening, we will also have 14 automated RMGs, with seven more to be added – again, probably by 2020 – along with 19 straddle carriers.
“APM Terminals is investing EUR150 million in the new container terminal,” Merli stated, “of which EUR100 million will go on equipment such as the cranes. The other EUR50 million is a contribution to the port infrastructure, which is being built by the port with a EUR300 million investment.
“Our facility will be the only port in Italy able to handle ultra-large container ships of over 18,000 teu capacity and integration of Vado Ligure enhances the logistics options for businesses and the shipping lines calling the Ligurian coast,” Merli added. “We are building Italy’s port of the future with ideal access to Turin and northern Italy manufacturing zones as well as consumer markets.
“Equally important, we will have the best port system and product in the market – capable of serving container vessels, reefer vessels, ro-ro and break-bulk vessels,” he concluded.