The construction of the second container terminal dubbed Côte d’Ivoire Terminal (CIT) at the port of Abidjan in the Ivory Coast is set to begin following the signing of the project implementation agreement between the developers Bolloré and APM Terminals, and the contractor China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC), a subsidiary of China Communications Construction Company.
Located adjacent to the existing Abidjan Terminal, Côte d’Ivoire Terminal is scheduled to be operational by the end of 2021 at an investment of 400m euro inclusive of the terminal construction and equipment works. The developer will operate the terminal for a period of 20 years before handing it over to the Ports Authority ‘Port Autonome d’Abidjan’.
The new terminal overview
Once completed, CIT will enhance the competitiveness of the port of Abidjan and add an additional 1.2 million TEU in annual throughput capacity, in its first phase of development.
It will have a maximum draft of -18 meters. That means that its 1,100m quay will be able to accommodate vessels up to -18 meters, providing scope for accepting larger vessels in the future. It will also have a rail yard with two tracks of 300 meters each, and it will offer reefer plugs for up to 1,100 containers.
Earlier this month, the terminal management signed a contract for the supply of 6 post-panamax gantry cranes, 13 e-RTG, and 36 Tugmasters. Additional equipment is included in future plans, once the terminal approaches an agreed volume threshold.
Gateway for neighboring countries
According to Koen De Backker, the Managing Director of CIT, the ports strategic location on the West African coast plus the additional capacity provided by CIT combined with its ability to handle larger new-generation ships of up to 14,000 TEU and 350m in length, not to mention its deep draft will position Abidjan as a preferred gateway for surrounding countries such as Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger, which currently use less optimal routes due to capacity restrictions at gateway terminals and it will also serve as a transshipment hub for Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia.