ICTSI completes buy of Polish terminal

ICTSI completes buy of Polish terminal

International Container Terminal Services, Inc. and the Port Authority of Gdynia on May 30 signed an agreement completing the privatization process for the Port of Gdynia's Baltic Container Terminal.

ICTSI said it paid 155 million zlotys ($41 million) for a 20-year lease to operate the facility. It anticipates taking over day-to-day control early June.

Enrique K. Razon, chairman and president of ICTSI, said, "This is a market we have long wanted to be in, and it is the type of market we operate best in - a gateway terminal market. We have in the past examined various routes of entry, and are confident that, given the criteria governing container handling charges in Poland, we have not only arrived in the marketplace by the best route but the only truly viable one to achieve a satisfactory return on the investments we are making."

Razon added that total investment in the terminal will come to $80 million."

The operator expects to begin development in staff, information technology systems and equipment, and to raise capacity from the current 350,000-400,000 TEUs to around 700,000 TEUs "in a very short time."

The terminal now covers about 148 acres, and includes four container berths with gantry cranes and on-dock rail loading, and one ro-ro berth. The container stacking area can accommodate 11,000 TEUs, which is also to be expanded. Quayside draft is 32 feet.

Container traffic at BCT totaled 247,000 TEUs in 2002, up from 217,000 TEUs the previous year.