The Port of Liverpool welcomed a trial vessel call from COSCO on October 17, which it said demonstrated the strength of its relationships with China.
COSCO’s MV Jork will unload mainly high value Asian goods at the port for fast delivery into the supply chain across the UK.
Cargo is expected to be at its final destination hours after discharge on the Mersey due to the facility’s consistent truck turnaround time of less than 40 minutes, according to the port.
Peel Ports Group, which owns the Northwestern port, has said that this is an important milestone and will look to evolve the trial to a permanent call.
The Port of Liverpool has continued to grow in the container sector by 8.7% in the past 12 months.
Mark Whitworth, chief executive officer of Peel Ports Group, said: “Our relationship with China has been incredibly strong for a number of years now, and the faith shown by COSCO in the capabilities and infrastructure of Liverpool shows how global perceptions of the UK’s shipping ecosystem are starting to shift.”
The company already has a strong relationship with crane manufacturer Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries (ZPMC) as the firm supplied five ship-to-shore (STS) cranes for the £400m (US$528m) container terminal Liverpool2.
The port has multimodal access by rail, sea and road to the majority of UK consumers, which Whitworth believes is the reason why global lines should call at Liverpool2.
A delegation from Peel Ports is currently visiting China to discuss phase two of the Liverpool2’s development.