APM Terminals ventures into Colombia

Dutch-headquartered container terminal operator APM Terminals, part of Maersk Group, and Colombian-based port and terminal operating company, Compañia de Puertos Asociados S.A. (Compas S.A.), have signed a joint venture agreement to jointly manage and operate Compas S.A.’s existing multipurpose Cartagena Terminal.

APM Terminals and Compas S.A. will jointly invest over USD 200 million in upgrading and expanding the Cartagena Terminal, including state-of-the-art terminal equipment. The upgrade is expected to triple annual throughput capacity for the terminal to handle the larger vessels transiting the widened Panama Canal.

While Compas S.A. will continue to be the concession holder, APM Terminals will hold a 51% majority share in the joint venture that will run the facility.

“Colombia represents one of the most promising investment opportunities in the region and we are pleased to participate in the country’s ongoing economic growth and development. Cartagena has enormous significance in South America ports and this JV underlines APM Terminals growth and investment plans,” said APM Terminals CEO Kim Fejfer.

The Compas S.A. Cartagena Terminal has an annual throughput capacity of 250,000 TEUs and 1.5 million tons of general cargo. It becomes the sixth operational Latin American facility within the APM Terminals Global Terminal Network, which includes interests in operating port facilities in Callao, Peru; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Santos, Pecém, and Itajaí, Brazil. APM Terminals’ Latin American interests handled an overall combined container throughput of 2.1 million TEUs in 2014.

Cartagena, located at the northern tip of South America on Colombia’s Caribbean coast, was the second-busiest container port in South America in 2014, and the fifth-busiest in the Latin American/Caribbean Region, with a throughput of 2.23 million TEUs, trailing only Balboa and Colón, Panama; Santos, Brazil and Manzanillo, Mexico in container volume.

The Port of Cartagena’s annual container volume growth rate was 13% from 2013 to 2014. Total Colombian port container throughput was 3.35 million TEUs in 2014, ranking third, after Brazil and Chile.

APM Terminals has two new deep-water terminals under construction in Latin America at Moin, Costa Rica, and Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico.

The company today reported a profit of USD 161m (USD 223m) for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. The underlying profit was USD 159m (USD 211m). 

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