TWO months after announcing its interest in operating another port in South America, port operator International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) has landed a concession agreement to operate a port in Ecuador.
In a report to the Philippine Stock Exchange, ICTSI said the Guayaquil Port Authority has declared it the winner of a 20-year public service concession for the container and multipurpose terminal at the Port of Guayaquil in Ecuador. The agreement will be sealed in May this year.
Guayaquil is the commercial heart of Ecuador
The port handles 93% of container traffic in/out of the country and 62% of total import-export cargo, representing 453,000 TEUs and 5.1 million tons respectively, making it the 13th largest port in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Located in the west coast of South America close to the most important north-south shipping routes, the Port of Guayaquil is of great importance for the logistics of main ocean carriers in the US, Europe, South America and Far East trade lanes and offers a secure area for berthing.
The port’s container terminal has three berths of 185 meters each and 290,879 square meters of paved area for containers while the multipurpose terminal has five piers of 185 m each 85,234 square meters of warehouse for general cargo, including 4,086 square meters for the refrigerated cargo and 5,408 square meters for dangerous cargo.
Its bulk terminal has one marginal pier of 155 meters, three silos for 8,900 cubic meters, belt conveyors, two warehouses of 900 metric tons capacity each, one grain warehouse for 30,000 metric tons, one vegoil tank of 240 cubic meters capacity and three of 9,800 cubic meters suitable for heavy liquids such as molasses.
With another South American port already in the bag, ICTSI now focuses on its second and third target areas for expansion this year — China and India.
ICTSI also operates the Tecon Suape Container Terminal in Brazil, Baltic Container Terminal (BCT) in Poland, and took over the Naha port in Japan and the Port of Madagascar in Toamasina in 2005. Last year, it bought 95% of the total outstanding shares (equity) in PT Makassar Terminal Services in Indonesia and also took over cargo-handling operations over the Tartous port in Syria late last year. ICTSI is also not dropping the possibility of restarting negotiations for the Guererro Port in Guam.
The company has also operated ports in Argentina, Mexico, Tanzania, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Thailand from 1994 to 2001.
At the moment, 66% of the revenues of ICTSI come from its operations in Manila International Container Terminal and 36% from its overseas terminals, particularly from Brazil and Poland.
Data showed that TSA handled 135,415 TEUs as of the third quarter of 2006, 24% short of its 2005 figure. BCT, on the other hand, has recorded 297,257 TEUs as of the third quarter of 2006, which is also about 24% short of its 2005 figure.
MICT, meanwhile, has handled more than 1.3 million TEUs for the first three quarters, also the same percentage short of its 2005 figure.