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Asciano has announced a capital investment program to comprehensively redevelop and expand its container terminal at Port Botany in Sydney, New South Wales.
This will include investing $348 million to develop fully the recently leased Knuckle capacity extension as well as the introduction of state-of-the-art terminal handling technology, additional cranes and straddles, and new upgraded employee facilities.
The redevelopment and expansion project will transform the Port Botany terminal into a world-class and internationally competitive facility with four berths and 1,400 m of quay line. The project will increase capacity from 1.15 million to 1.6 million TEU per annum to meet current trade growth forecasts.
Asciano chief executive and MD John Mullen says the redevelopment will reinforce Patrick’s position as Australia’s leading stevedore, "ensuring our ongoing competitiveness by delivering improved customer service, higher levels of safety, and significantly enhanced operational efficiency and productivity."
Due for completion during 2014, the investment will deliver substantial returns from productivity improvements including significant cost savings and will secure Patrick’s tenure at Port Botany until at least 2043.
The project includes the installation of automated straddle carrier technology. The AutoStrad technology has been operating in the Port of Brisbane since 2005 and has delivered significant safety and efficiency improvements.
Further redevelopment of the terminal will be carried out under a staged approach as volumes grow over the next three decades. Asciano has the flexibility to additionally increase capacity at the terminal beyond 2014 by introducing automatic stacking cranes expanding capacity by an additional 75% to 2.8 million TEU per annum.
"The redevelopment of our Port Botany Container Terminal together with the previously announced nine new cranes and additional equipment at our Brisbane, Melbourne and Fremantle and Sydney container terminals will continue to drive productivity on Australian wharves towards best practice," adds Mullen.
Approximately 270 positions are expected to be made redundant at the end of the project in mid-2014; however, the company says it is strongly committed to identifying redeployment opportunities for affected staff.
This article first appeared on www.forkliftaction.com
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