Exciting Developments for Zeeland Seaports

The past year was successful for Zeeland Seaports. The transshipment in the port fared better than expected with an 8% increase. The port does not yet know what 2012 will bring and is thus reserved in the estimations. The economic climate is still troublesome. Yet there are developments that will hopefully make this year as successful as the past one.

The port area of Zeeland Seaports is made up of the ports of Vlissingen and Terneuzen. The strategic location on the Westerschelde, the open connection to sailing routes from and to the North Sea and the river Schelde, between Rotterdam and Antwerp, allows for easy access to and from the port. Around 250 companies make up the Zeeland Seaports, active in, amongst others, logistics and maritime services. The companies combined are responsible for around 20% of the employment for the province of Zeeland in the Netherlands. Zeeland Seaports is one of the fastest growing ports in Europe, not only thanks to their strategic location, but also due to the people who work in and around the seaport. The people are proud of their job, their company and their port. To accommodate the growth of the port, Flemish minister Hilde Crevits and her Dutch counterpart, Melanie Schultz van Haegen, signed an agreement for the further development of a new sea lock near Terneuzen. The research should be finished in 2014, with the build commencing in 2015.

Increase of services

Next to that, on 21 June 2012, the new Ovet quay in the Kaloot harbour was opened in Vlissingen. With the commissioning of this quay, Ovet has increased its storage and transshipment capacity and has also enhanced the position of Zeeland Seaports as a bulk port. The new quay means Ovet is able to handle several ships at the same time and as such meet the growing demand for imported coal from Germany as a result of the closure of the German nuclear power stations and coal mines. The new quay will create ten new jobs in Zealand Seaports.

Also in June, contracts were signed between Zeeland Seaports, the Dutch UTB, leading in the distribution of various liquids, like fuel, and the American Century, an aluminum company, for the takeover of the foundry factory on the Zalco plot. The take-over means that half of the original plot will be used for work. The other half, which consists of an aluminum smelting works, will be disposed of so that Zeeland Seaports can develop more water related activities there. Furthermore, the Dutch group Supermaritime will be building a break bulk terminal on the Scaldia harbour in Vlissingen. This addition will mean a new service for Supermaritime and an increase of transshipment and project cargo for Zeeland Seaports. The new terminal will be operational towards the end of 2012.

Rebecca McFedries