Ho Chi Minh City: Terminal operator DP World has welcomed the very first vessel to navigate the new channel on the Soai Rap River to its Saigon Premier Container Terminal (SPCT) in Ho Chi Minh City.
The MSC vessel Xutra Bhum, with a nominal teu capacity of 2,378 and dwt of 30,832, sailed up the 54 km long channel to a special ceremony to mark the historic occasion.
The new Soai Rap channel makes SPCT the deepest Ho Chi Minh City port, DP World claimed in a release.
With a draft of 9.5 m, and a tidal rise of up to 3.4 m, the channel doubles the size of vessels that can access SPCT, allowing panamax vessels to safely berth just 15 km from the city.
SPCT can now handle vessels of 50,000 dwt, and vessels with 5,000 teu capacity are expected to start using the channel in the coming weeks. There are also no nighttime restrictions. [22/04/14]