Home » Ports/Terminals » ATI to invest $85M until 2013

ASIAN Terminals, Inc (ATI) is sinking in $85 million starting this year until the end of 2013 to expand its South Harbor terminal in anticipation of bigger traffic.

ATI said the amount — equivalent to 28% of its $300-million investment commitment to the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) until 2038 — will be used to establish key infrastructure and cargo-handling facilities.

In an interview at the sidelines of the 6th Philippine Ports and Shipping Conference held at the Peninsula Manila last week, ATI vice president Sean Perez said South Harbor already has an 80% utilization rate and is thus in need of expansion to meet future demand.

“We are making these investments as part of our commitment with the PPA to further increase capacity and efficiency of our South Harbor terminal,” Perez explained.

“However, we are also encouraging government to do its part by investing heavily in key infrastructure projects to complement our investments,” he said.

“A two-way investment traffic will ensure support for the future growth of the country’s ports.”

ATI is looking to expand South Harbor’s terminal capacity from 950,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) to 1.4 million TEUs, further expandable to 1.9 million TEUs if traffic breaches the current capacity within the next 15 to 18 months.

The company will also improve crane rails as well as procure additional cargo-handling equipment.

At the moment, South Harbor is enjoying strong cargo traffic brought about by increasing imports. Last year it handled 895,000 TEUs, only 55,000 TEUs short of its total capacity.

Until lately, the terminal has had to deal with too many overstaying empty containers of client-shipping lines. This has compelled ATI to look for an alternative depot for empties.

The company is now negotiating with the local government of Sta. Mesa for the long-term lease of a two-hectare property for use a second inland container depot. The transaction may be completed in two weeks.

The facility could be ready in 45 days upon signing of the agreement.

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