Container terminals at the Port Antwerp’s Deurganck dock are scheduled to start opening around the clock on weekdays to spread the flow of trucks more efficiently.
The port’s two biggest container terminals, MSC PSA European Terminal (MPET) and DP World Antwerp Gateway, both located in the port’s Deurganck dock, will extend their opening hours as of March 20 to allow containers’ loading and unloading by truck also at night on weekdays.
Antwerp Gateway’s quay 1700 and MPET’s quay 1742 (MPET) are set to be open non-stop from 5am and 5.30am respectively on Monday to 5.30 am on Saturday.
The DP World-operated Antwerp Gateway, which is a joint venture (JV) between DP World (42.5%), Zim Ports (20%), Cosco Pacific (20%), Terminal Link/CMA-CGM (10%) and Duisport (7.5%), currently opens from 5am to 9.30 pm.
MPET, which is a JV between TIL Group and PSA, is currently opened from 5.30am to 9.30pm.
According to a statement by the port, operating around the clock is expected to allow the terminals to increase their capacity and spread out their handling volumes.
The statement noted: “DP World Antwerp handles some 1700 trucks per day and MPET around 2600. Analysis has shown that the handling time at both terminals tends to get longer from 11am onwards, with a peak at 5pm. After 7pm the number of trucks drops considerably, and so calling later in the day yields significant time savings.”
As the statement added, permitting deliveries and collections at night is set to further extend this “quiet period”.
According to the port, truck companies themselves asked for an extension of the opening hours and shippers also are in favour of the initiative.