APM Terminals boosts Apapa operation
… Commissions 5 new eco-friendly RTGs
• Sets to up terminal capacity to 1m TEUs
APM Terminals Apapa Limited on Friday commissioned five new Rubber Tyre Gantry (RTG) cranes out of a series of 10 as part of its third phase terminal upgrade.
Chief Commercial Officer of APM Terminals Apapa, Mr. Neil Fletcher, said that the company has invested USD17.5 million (about N2.8 billion) in acquiring the 10 RTGs, the first batch of which were commissioned while the remaining five are expected to arrive in October 2013.
These 10 RTGs, according to Fletcher, are the best in class and are different from the existing fleet of RTGs in use at the terminal.
“The design incorporates technology that is the envy of terminal operators in Europe, Asia and America. Some noteworthy innovations include stack profiling system that acts as an anti-collision system to prevent knocking down containers which engenders safer operations; the variable speed engine allows for fuel consumption as low as 13 litres per hour, reducing carbon emissions by up to 50% against regular RTGs which consume about 24 litres per hour,” Fletcher said.
He further said that all the RTG cabins are fitted with air conditioning and other fixtures ergonomically suited to the operator’s comfort.
Also speaking at the commissioning ceremony, which was attended by journalists and invited stakeholders, Chief Operating Officer of the company, Mr. Laurence Smith, said that the new cranes were designed by Konecranes, a company based in Finland that has been designing and maintaining lifting equipment in ports and harbours all over the world for the past 100 years.
Smith said APM that Terminals Apapa also takes pride in developing its Nigerian workforce to operate all equipment types.
“The company deploys APMT’s globally defined and internationally accredited training course ReQuip in training equipment operators. This course creates a standard consistent approach to develop core competencies in equipment operators. To train staff in this way, the terminal employs four ReQuip certified trainers who are multi skilled on different equipment types, including RTGs.
“The operators themselves are happy about the arrival of these RTGs and can already appreciate its safety features and the productivity gains,” Smith said.
He said that the acquisition of the new cranes brings the total number of RTGs at the terminal to 22, in addition to 28 Reach Stackers and empty handlers and nine mobile harbour cranes.
He said that the terminal also has 80 trucks and 470 Reefer plugs.
Smith said: “Over the past seven years, equipment inherited from the Nigerian Ports Authority has been systematically overhauled and replaced with new assets. APM Terminals has been in the forefront of deploying equipment and training staff to support the rising demand through Apapa. The company has consistently raised the bar of operations in the maritime industry in Nigeria with the type of equipment deployed. This was first with the heavy Liebherr LHM 500 Mobile harbor cranes in 2008 and then with Nigeria’s first Rubber tyre gantry cranes in 2009.”
Port Manager of the Lagos Port Complex, Apapa, Mr. Nasir Anas Mohammed, commended APM Terminals for its contribution to port development in Nigeria, even as he assured the company of constant support from Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
Some of the crane operators at the terminal, who were obviously elated with the new RTGs acquisition, while speaking at the commissioning ceremony, expressed gratitude to APM Terminals Apapa’s management for promoting safe working conditions.
“This Konecrane RTG is fast. The seat is very comfortable. It allows for safety and increased productivity,” said Godspower Ojobor Roy, a crane operator.
Another operator, George Idem said: “The Konecranes have given our terminal a facelift. I am happy about this development as an RTG operator.”
Describing the Konecrane RTGs as safer, Umahi Bernard Okoro said: “I can gantry without fear of derailing out from the gantry line or path. APMT Apapa has done well.”
“Improving service delivery to consignees is the main motivation behind the ongoing third phase of Apapa terminal’s expansion. A total investment of USD 135 Million is being spent to pave the remaining half of the yard, install a new customs Inspection Rack, procure more terminal equipment, build an office complex housing staff lunch and changing room and additional office space for Customs. This second phase of the project is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2014 and will bring the throughput capacity of the terminal to CIRCA 1 million TEUs,” said Fletcher.
Journalists were also driven round the newly paved physical examination site at the terminal. The new site will be put to use from October 8, 2013.
About APM Terminals Apapa
APMT Apapa is a part of the APM Terminals network of 63 terminals and ports around the world. It is the largest container terminal in Nigeria and in West Africa. APM Terminals is committed to developing the Apapa container terminal into a world class facility.
From 2006, in two phases of expansion, APMT has invested over USD 210 million on civil works and state of the art equipment and technology.
Since APM Terminals took over the concession in 2006:-
• Container throughput has grown from 250,000 TEUs annually to approx. 613, 000 TEUs in 2012
• Productivity has increased from an average of 9.7 berth moves per hour (bmph) to a current average of 26.3 bmph
• Dwell time for import containers has been reduced by 14 days
• Vessel waiting time has come down from 30 days to 0 days
• The terminal has implemented an online invoicing and payment system. (Rollout of online refund is expected by end 2013)
• APMT Apapa is fully International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Codemcompliant