The Port Authority of Bilbao will travel to Shanghai to attend the Transport Logistic Fair (Hall 2, Stand 227), which is one of the most important logistics events in Asia, and which will be held from 16–18 May. China is one of the Port of Bilbao’s twelve main markets in total traffic, and second in container cargo, in which it is only preceded by the United Kingdom. Imports make up 71% of all classes of goods traffic with China, while exports amount to 29%. Bilbao’s main trading ports are Shanghaitives, Ningbo and Tianjinxingang.
Bilbao is located on the entrance to the North European Atlantic route, and Port representatives will inform, that thanks to its excellent geographical situation, it is the ideal connection between Asia and Europe, both for its land hinterland and the European Atlantic countries. Bilbao is a multi-purpose port, with the experience and the terminals for all classes of cargoes, whether they are raw materials, finished products, heavy loads, perishable or frozen goods; in addition, the Port has the capacity to develop new traffics. Hence, it can position itself as a port that shipowners can consider as an alternative to avoid the congestion that periodically is produced in other European ports.
Among the Port of Bilbao’s outstanding infrastructures, and especially interesting for the Asian market, is its container terminal, with the greatest draughts in the Iberian Peninsula (21 metres) and which is operated by Noatum Container Terminal, whose shareholders have recently been joined by Chinese shipping line, Cosco, the fourth largest in the world.
After Cosco’s recent incorporation, the terminal intends to maximise its resources in order to be able to operate container vessels with capacities of up to 12,000 TEUs. The terminal has a 1,155-metre berthing line and two Super Post-Panamax dockside cranes. These factors, together with the Port’s great draughts can attract direct calls from such ocean-going vessels.
Moreover, in November 2017, the Noatum Container Terminal Bilbao, belonging to the Noatum Ports Group, and the licensed operator of the Port of Bilbao Container Terminal, inaugurated a
new automatic truck access system, which supposes more efficient management of the reception and delivery of containers, thus significantly reducing truck-waiting times by up to 45% and guaranteeing total control of the process and registration in real time of the operations carried out.
Furthermore, this new facility means that the space occupied by the previous gates can be dedicated to the extension of Noatum’s rail terminal inside their licensed spaces: in specific terms, their four 450-metre tracks will be extended by 100 metres, and so, once the extensions are completed, enable trains of up to 500 metres long to operate.