Maersk Sends Largest Container Carriers of 13,000 TEU to Antwerp

By Port Of Antwerp, PRNE
Wednesday, June 22, 2011

ANTWERP, Belgium, June 23, 2011 -


The container ships arriving in the port of Antwerp continue to
score a series of “firsts.” On the evening of 22 June the Maersk
Enfield called in Antwerp on its maiden voyage. With a capacity of
13,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) this is the first time
that the Danish company, Maersk Line, has sent ships of such a size
to Antwerp. The increase in scale demonstrates the great confidence
that the port of Antwerp inspires following completion of the third
round of deepening of the river Scheldt. “The deepening has turned
out to be a commercial success. We are now a top-level player, with
the largest container lines in the world placing their confidence
in Antwerp,” declared Marc Van Peel, port alderman and chairman of
the Port Authority.

Antwerp has witnessed a spectacular increase in the number of
calls by ultra-large container ships (ULCS) during the past few
months. Thanks to the deepening of the Scheldt these behemoths can
count on tide-independent navigation with draughts of up to 13.10
metres. If allowance is made for the tide, then the maximum draught
at the moment is 15.50 metres. At the end of 2009 the maximum
(tide-dependent) draught was still only 14 metres. Thanks to the
deepening, shipping companies can now load an additional 1,500 TEU
on board their vessels when calling at Antwerp. The Permanent
Commission for Scheldt Navigation will continue to review the
conditions for port access. In the meantime it is investigating the
possibility of reducing the keelroom percentage when passing the
“thresholds” on the way to the sea.

By choosing Antwerp, shipping companies opt not only for
accessibility but also for sustainability. “Our location deep
inland is greatly appreciated in this respect,” declared Marc Van
. “Antwerp is 100 kilometres farther inland than other ports on
the Hamburg - Le Havre range. This means maximum use can be made of
shipping transport as opposed to road or rail, which not only saves
time and cost but also reduces the carbon footprint. That’s an
important advantage for shipping companies striving for
sustainability,” he concluded.

During its stay in Antwerp the Maersk Enfield will berth in the
Deurganck dock on the left bank. Twenty-four hours after its
arrival it will leave for Felixstowe in the UK.

Name: Annik Dirkx , E-mail: Annik.Dirkx at / Annik.dirkx at , Phone: +32-3-205-23-09

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