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PORT ELIZABETH, NJ: February 22, 2017. APM Terminals is to increase a planned investment in its Port Elizabeth, facility from US$70 million to US$200 million in anticipation of handling ultra-large container ships (ULCS) of up to 20,000 TEU capacity.

The new figure includes an order for four next-generation Ship-To-Shore (STS) cranes to discharge ULCS vessels, expected to call at the port after the heightening of the Bayonne Bridge is completed later this year.

New Jersey Bayonne BridgeThe bridge (right), linking New Jersey with Staten Island and completed in 1932, is being raised from 151 ft. to 215 ft. to allow ULCS vessels to enter Newark Bay without air draft issues.

APM handles over 2,100 trucks a day, 4,000 terminal gate transactions and more than 500 vessel calls per year. With the expectation of discharging three ULCS vessels simultaneously, the company said it would increase current capacity from 1.5 million to 2.3 million TEU per annum.

Included in the additional investment will be an expanded gate complex designed to improve a faster cargo flow, and upgrades to container handling equipment to make them safer, more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly, it said.

"Our goal is to make APM Terminals Port Elizabeth safer, easier to use and faster for our trucker community, more productive for our shipping line clients and more reliable for our clients' supply chains expectations, " explained APM Terminals' North America president Wim Lagaay. "These enhancements would not be possible without the essential work the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey has done to deepen the harbor and heighten the Bayonne Bridge to ensure future success and growth of the port," he added.

The company said it decided to investment more money in the terminal after "close dialogue" with the port authority, shipping companies, importers and exporters, intermodal rail providers, trucking companies and the International Longshoreman's Association.

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