Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) has laid out plans to make Italy’s port of Gioia Tauro the number one container transhipment hub in the Mediterranean, taking aim at the Cosco-controlled port of Piraeus.
“This is our target and we are not interested to be number two,” said Paolo Maccarini, head of MSC’s Terminal Investment Limited in Italy, on the occasion of the 23,700 teu MSC Sixin maiden call. This was the largest containership that has ever called any Italian port in terms of nominal capacity.
“We have worked hard in the last 13 months to enable the port of Gioia Tauro to accommodate this impressive ship which looks to the future,” said Maccarini, who also underlined that an important investment plan has been launched by the terminal operator, which is 100% controlled by MSC.
“Gioia Tauro does not compete with national ports in Italy such as Genoa, Trieste or Naples. Our market is international and we compete with Port Said, Piraeus, Malta, Algeciras, Barcelona. They are different markets, playing with different rules and we have to be at the forefront,” Maccarini said.
Maccarini also recalled the promise made last year by Gianluigi Aponte, founder of MSC, who said that the Swiss-headquartered carrier would make Gioia Tauro the top port in the Mediterranean.