Port of Newcastle eyes higher throughput as UHL Fighter delivers new Liebherr cranes

Port of Newcastle eyes higher throughput as UHL Fighter delivers new Liebherr cranes

Photo source: Port of Newcastle

Australian Port of Newcastle is pushing forward with its diversification agenda as it looks to unlock new trade opportunities in regional and rural New South Wales. Delivered onboard the general cargo vessel, the UHL Fighter, the two LHM 550 harbour cranes departed the Port of Rostock in Germany in late June. 

Port of Newcastle CEO Craig Carmody said the $28.4-million investment marks a significant increase in container handling capabilities at the Port’s versatile Mayfield 4 berth.

“Industry has been very clear – they don’t want to have to pay more to send their container exports to Port Botany or Port of Brisbane when they could be taking advantage of Port of Newcastle’s enviable road and rail network and potentially save millions of dollars a year,” Carmody said. “These two new mobile harbour cranes will allow us to move cargo and containers within the limits that the Port Commitment Deeds (PCD) bind us, so that we can give our customers a viable alternative.”

He goes on to add that the Port of Newcastle is currently the world’s largest coal export port, but that diversification is a must, and that proving that there is demand for containers out of Newcastle, the NSW government will remove the PCD.

“Independent analysis has shown a Newcastle deepwater container terminal would contribute $2.5 billion to the national economy and generate more than 19,000 direct and indirect jobs, while reducing road and rail congestion and providing cheaper freight costs for regional importers and exporters, which in the end means more money back into the pockets of local farmers and businesses,” he added.

The 550 tonne Liebherr mobile harbour cranes feature the latest lift assistance systems for safer lifts and can handle a diverse mix of project cargo, including wind turbines, timber, steel coils, transformers and mining equipment.

They also have the capability to work in tandem for heavy lifts and lift two 20 ft or one 40 ft container in a single move.

Port of Newcastle’s mobile harbour cranes will undergo testing over the coming month and are expected to begin operations in September.

Author: Adnan Bajic

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