ICTSI’s Victoria terminal expands for larger ships next year

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ICTSI’s Victoria terminal expands for larger ships next year
Ongoing expansion works at Victoria International Container Terminal. Photo and caption from ICTSI.
  • Victoria International Container Terminal at the Port of Melbourne in Australia will begin berthing larger ships by 2024 when its expansion is completed
  • The AU$235-million (roughly US$159 million) expansion will enable VICT to handle two 336-meter-long vessels simultaneously
  • The first phase of the expansion, which is on track for completion in late 2023, will increase VICT’s capacity by 25% to 1.25 million TEUs
  • A third quayside crane and four automatic stacking cranes will be installed in the second phase, which will be scheduled for completion in line with market demand

A project to accommodate larger ships at the Victoria International Container Terminal (VICT) at the Port of Melbourne in Australia is on schedule to be operational by 2024, according to parent company International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI).

Upon completion, the AU$235-million (roughly US$159 million) expansion will enable the container terminal at the Port of Melbourne to handle two 336-meter-long vessels simultaneously, said recently appointed VICT chief executive officer Bruno Porchietto in a statement.

“Once the project is complete, our operations will expand from five quay cranes to eight, adding three new-generation cranes, 10 new automatic stacking cranes (ASC) and 50% increased yard capacity,” Porchietto said.

He said this will enable VICT to handle neo-Panamax vessels of up to 14,000-TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) capacity, “providing shipping lines with the opportunity to leverage economies of scale and thereby reduce supply chain costs – something that isn’t available at the Port of Melbourne’s Swanson dock terminals.”

The expansion is being delivered in two phases, the first of which is on track for completion in late 2023.

Phase 1 will increase VICT’s capacity by 25% to 1.25 million TEUs and include two new quayside cranes and six new ASCs.

The third quayside crane and other four ASCs will be added in Phase 2, which will be scheduled for completion in line with market demand.

The terminal expansion was envisioned by VICT’s parent company, ICTSI, when the Philippine-based global port operator won the concession for the Melbourne-based terminal in 2014. It forms a key part of the Port of Melbourne’s 2050 Port Development Strategy.

Porchietto was appointed CEO of VICT in February after a successful four-and-a-half-year stint as CEO of TecPlata, ICTSI’s business unit at the Port of Buenos Aires in Argentina. He has more than 20 years of experience in executive and CEO roles across eight countries and in blue-chip multinationals such as Coca-Cola and Unilever.

In a separate proposal from ICTSI, the business has publicly announced a AU$500 million-plus expansion of Webb Dock, which it believes would provide the lowest cost, most efficient and environmentally sustainable long-term solution for additional capacity at the Port of Melbourne.

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ICTSI believes the proposal will be a key facilitator for the continued growth of Victoria’s economy.

The port operator has engaged multiple firms to assess the merits of its proposal. Jacobs Engineering undertook a detailed technical assessment that included estimated construction costs, while Boston Consulting Group focused on market and economic assessments.

ICTSI has already invested more than AUS700 million in VICT’s operations, making it one of the largest non-government infrastructure investors in Australia.