Port of Newcastle’s existing project cargo, general cargo and container handling capability will be further enhanced following a $28.4-million investment in two Liebherr L550 mobile harbour cranes and associated infrastructure at the Port’s Mayfield 4 berth.
Port of Newcastle’s Executive Manager Trade & Business Development, Paul Brown, said the mobile harbour cranes will increase efficiency at the port and will provide an enhanced alternative for customers currently moving both oversized equipment and containerised cargoes through the East Coast’s capital city ports.
“Our customers already benefit from Port of Newcastle’s uncongested road, dedicated freight rail and berth access and this investment will enable both existing and new customers to utilise the Port’s infrastructure to move their oversized equipment and containerised cargo even more efficiently through Newcastle than they currently can.”
“Port of Newcastle is excited about this upgrade to our Mayfield 4 berth service offering. Our team look forward to working with customers and new trades alike to identify how the mobile harbour cranes service can benefit their supply chain, improve efficiency and further support their ability to successfully compete in international markets,” Mr Brown said.
The contract to supply the cranes has been awarded to Liebherr. Built in Germany, the two brand new Liebherr L550 cranes will feature lift assistance systems which will ensure improved material handling, precise control over load movement, and safer lifts.
With access to rail sidings and upgraded internal roads, able to handle oversized trucks, the new cranes are capable of handling a diverse mix of project cargo, including wind turbines, mining equipment, timber, steel coils and transformers. The cranes will also have the capability to work in tandem for heavy lifts and lift two 20’ or one 40’ container in a single move.
Port of Newcastle CEO Craig Carmody said the investment in mobile harbour cranes was part of the Port’s long-term diversification plans to better meet the demands of customers.
“As the Hunter’s trade gateway to the world, the mobile harbour crane investment will enable the Port to leverage the full use of our abundant channel, rail, road and land capacity to accommodate existing and new trade and ensure the Port of Newcastle is best placed to meet the demands of customers into the future.”
“Naturally, we would also like to be announcing the next stage in our game changing $2.4-billion Multi-purpose Deepwater Terminal project. Although we are not presently in that position, Port of Newcastle’s goals are unwavering,” Mr Carmody said.
“We are firmly focused on seizing opportunities that will create a broad mix of trade opportunities which help to support our local industry, boost jobs in addition to the 9000 positions the Port directly and indirectly supports now, and build a prosperous local, state and national economy.”
Port of Newcastle’s Mobile Harbour Cranes are expected to arrive in mid-2022.
Melwyn Noronha, CEO of Shipping Australia, commented: “Ideally, shipping companies would like quick turnaround times for their ships. Accordingly, we fully support improvements that boost cargo handling and port efficiency. Enhancements of cargo handling equipment, such as this purchase by the Port of Newcastle, will help diversify port operations and boost efficiency. The new cranes will help provide choices and options for importers and exporters, which can only be good for the Australian economy. We congratulate Port of Newcastle on their new investment”.