Veracruz seeks to quadruple capacity through US$1.8bn expansion

Veracruz seeks to quadruple capacity through US$1.8bn expansion
Container traffic at Veracruz rose 8% in 2013

containerThe Mexican port of Veracruz has plans to boost its capacity by more than 400% with a US$1.8bn expansion programme.

Reportedly the first of two planned container terminals will be put to tender in the first quarter of 2014, part of a four-year expansion plan due for completion in 2018. It is thought that the government will pump US$1.2bn into the project, with the remaining US$600m funded by the private sector.

First on the agenda is the construction of a new breakwater and dock to support the pair of new terminals. The second phase will add more terminals and could last until 2030. Port officials claim that capacity will increase by 413%, from 23m tonnes to 118m tonnes.

Container traffic rose by 8% last year to 425,310 teu. Between 2010 and 2013 container imports rose at the port by 28%.

The port said that operators at its existing container terminals will be able to tender bids for the new facilities. Currently SSA Mexico, Terminales de Cargas Especializadas, Terminal Maritima de Veracruz have container operations at Veracruz.

Latin America is seeing a raft of port investment and expansion, as the sector hopes to take advantage of the expanded Panama Canal when it opens in early 2016. Veracruz, on the east coast of Mexico, will probably need to be able to accommodate vessels up to 13,000 teu.