CMA CGM signs MoU for expansion in Caribbean

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

August 17, 2011

CMA CGM has signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the expansion in Kingston of its future central hub in the Caribbean

The CMA CGM Group is pleased to announce the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the operation, equipment and expansion of the Gordon Cay Container Terminal in the Jamaican port of Kingston, for a minimum period of 35 years. The project to develop the terminal will be based on the existing facilities.

Signed on 4 August 2011 by Rodolphe Saadé, CMA CGM Executive Officer, and the Chairman of the Port of Kingston, in the presence of Jamaica’s Minister of Transport Michael Henry, the MOU marks the start of a major investment program before the terminal is fully commissioned in 2015.

The project to widen the Panama Canal will require a major reorganization of shipping, particularly in the Caribbean and North America region. The “New Panamax” vessels, with capacities up to 12,500 TEUs will be able to cross the Canal, compared to the current limit on 4,000 TEUs. Transport distribution will only be possible from a hub that can accommodate these giants, which is currently not the case for most ports in the Caribbean and on the United States East Coast.

Development of a central hub in Kingston will allow CMA CGM to take full advantage of these changes.

The terms of the Memorandum of Understanding signed with the Port of Kingston include:

•     Taking over operations in the current facilities
•     A phased expansion of the terminal: once in service, the Gordon Cay Terminal will have a 1,300m quay after the first phase, with potential to develop an extra 1,700m, and a 17m draft capability to accommodate the “New Panamax” vessels.


“This project is a strategic investment for CMA CGM and illustrates the Group’s willingness to be ahead of the game in anticipating changes that will result from widening the Panama Canal. This agreement confirms the CMA CGM Group’s historic commitment to Jamaica and the region,” explains Rodolphe Saadé, Executive Officer at CMA CGM.

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