Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Largest Freight Container Vessel Yet Calls at UK Port

Felixstowe Takes Record from Southampton
Shipping News Feature
UK – The growth in the new generation of container ocean freight carriers that are just entering service means that of late there have been a host of record size vessels calling into British ports. Now the largest container ship to call in North Europe so far has made its maiden call at the Port of Felixstowe. The 20,568 TEU Madrid Maersk, operated on the NEU2 Asia to Europe service from the 2M shipping alliance between Maersk and MSC, has arrived at the port, with over 6,000 TEU for the UK loaded in China and Malaysia.

Commenting on the latest record-breaker to call at the UK’s largest container port, Clemence Cheng, Chief Executive Officer of the Port of Felixstowe and Managing Director of Hutchison Ports Europe, said:

“The Port of Felixstowe is firmly established as the port of first-choice in the UK for the largest mega ships. We were the first in the UK to handle this latest class of vessel and continue to offer the widest and most frequent range of services on the major Asia - Europe trade.”

Built by South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, the Madrid Maersk is 399 metres long, has a beam of 58.6 metres and is the first of Maersk Line’s second generation Triple-Es, known officially as the EEE Mark II. The original Triple-Es have been regular callers at Felixstowe since 2013. Delivery of the remaining 10 Triple-E Mark II’s is expected to take place between now and the middle of 2018. Brian Godsafe, Managing Director UK & Ireland, Maersk Line, said:

“With this maiden call of Madrid Maersk we have yet another opportunity to celebrate our good cooperation with the Port of Felixstowe. As the latest addition to our modern fleet, this new vessel continues our commitment to serve our customers around the world in an even more efficient, environmentally-friendly and sustainable way.”

The 2M service has called at Felixstowe since its inception in January 2015 when the two core members, Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), failed in a bid to establish the proposed P3 vessel sharing agreement network with CMA CGM in 2014 after rejection by Chinese regulators. Now extra capacity in the 10 year agreement is also offered on 2M sailings by Hamburg Süd, which Maersk is purchasing subject to regulatory agreements, and Hyundai Merchant Marine, now a member of 2M +H.