The 2,378 teu MSC vessel Xutra Bhum has become the first vessel to navigate the new 54 km long channel on the Soai Rap River to the DP World Saigon Premier Container Terminal (SPCT) in the Hồ Chí Minh City Port, Vietnam.
The new 9.5 m channel makes SPCT the deepest terminal in the port and halves the steaming time to two hours, saving on pilotage and bunker fuel. With a tidal rise of up to 3.4 m and no night time restrictions, the channel doubles the size of vessels that can access SPCT, allowing the terminal to handle vessels up to 5,000 teu capacity.
The dredging works were carried out by the Soai Rap Programme Management unit of the Hồ Chí Minh City Department of Transport, which saw the project as one of the city’s highest priorities, and one that will benefit the entire south of Vietnam while helping to develop the surrounding areas.
“The new channel opens new opportunities for Vietnam, more efficiently connecting Hồ Chí Minh City to global markets, which will bring long term benefits to the country and to the community,” said Rashid Abdulla, senior vice president and managing director for DP World’s Asia Pacific region.
The DP World-operated 23 ha terminal is located in the Hiep Phuoc Industrial Park along the western shore of the Soai Rap River; operations began in October 2009.