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APMT opens US$1b box terminal in Costa Rica to handle fruit trade


APM Terminals has opened a new terminal in Moin, Costa Rica to enable products to be shipped to Europe and Asia without transshipment via the Panama Canal. The nation is the world's largest exporter of pineapples and third-largest exporter of bananas.

APMT, the terminal operating unit of A P Moller-Maersk, said the facility was built at a cost of US$1 billion and is on a 40-hectare artificial island. The terminal has a 650-metre-long pier and a container yard with the capacity to hold 26,000 TEU, including power connection capacity for 3,800 refrigerated containers, reported American Shipper.

'One of the goals of the Costa Rican government is job creation with a territoriality approach and, with this project that we are inaugurating today, the conditions of competitiveness and economic reactivation are being created for the province of Limon and also for the entire country,' Costa Rica President Carlos Alvarado Quesada was quoted as saying.

APMT chief executive officer Morten Engelstoft said the terminal opens 'a new era in international and intra-regional trade in Central America'.

Moin starts operations with 650 employees. APMT said a study, validated by the Central American Academy, said the facility could generate 147,000 indirect jobs over the next decade in Costa Rica.

APMT will contribute 7.5 per cent of its net income to the board of Port Administration and Economic Development of the Caribbean, or $20 million per annum.

The new terminal will have six ship-to-shore container cranes for handling containers and 29-yard cranes, representing an investment of $110 million. APMT said the new facility would be able to continuously perform an average of 180 movements per hour for loading and unloading ships, reducing the time taken to service ships from 40 hours at other docks to 15 hours.