£40m upgrade for Belfast Harbour container terminal
Belfast Harbour has revealed plans for a £40m investment programme to upgrade a container terminal linking Northern Ireland firms to global markets via major European hub ports in Holland and Belgium.
It will result in a £28m investment in 10 new cranes for the container terminal at Victoria Terminal 3 (VT3), which brings products such as food, drink and household goods to Northern Ireland.
It also provides a route to global markets for exporters.
Major civil works, to be delivered by contractor FP McCann, will also be undertaken.
The terminal is operated by Belfast Harbour's partners, Irish Continental Group (ICG), and handles more than 250 sailings annually between Belfast and key northern European container ports such as Rotterdam, Antwerp and Le Havre, providing importers and exporters with access to overseas markets.
Michael Robinson, Belfast Harbour's port director, said: "This investment programme will future-proof the terminal for a generation as well as utilise the most modern technology making Belfast Harbour one of the world leaders through the implementation of Rubber Tyre Gantry remote control and stack automation technology. Long-term, we anticipate that the container market will continue to grow and surpass pre-recession levels and as a port we need to be ready to handle these volumes.
"This is amongst the largest investment projects that Belfast Harbour has ever undertaken and will help create one of the most modern container handling terminals of its size in Europe."
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He said it would put Belfast Harbour in a position to accommodate export growth by firms in future.