Italy link could open TEN-Ts to Port of Moerdijk
A new rail connection between the Port of Moerdijk in The Netherlands and Piacenza in Italy has the potential to open up increased trade via the TEN-T Corridors. Due to be launched by the Italian GTS Group on February 13, it will begin with three round trips a week.
GTS says it will ‘integrate perfectly’ with its existing services which has Piacenza at the heart of a network connecting western Europe with southern member states such as Greece and Turkey. Moerdijk is a rapidly growing port which sits almost directly between Rotterdam and Antwerp, and is well placed to potentially exploit future growth through the Rhine-Alpine, North Sea-Mediterannean and North Sea-Baltic Corridors.
Ferdinand van den Oever, Director of the Port of Moerdijk, said it was important for the port to have good rail connections, and that the new service would contribute to this. “The number of trains at Moerdijk is increasing rapidly at this time, and the Port of Moerdijk is very satisfied with this development,” he said. “It contributes further to the sustainability of the port by promoting more transports via water and rail.””
Combined Cargo Terminals (CCT) has already invested in a new crane at Moerdijk in order to handle containers more efficiently and to reduce the amount of time containers are stationary at the terminal. It already has its own rail terminal with two 750 metre-long tracks and one of 950 metres which extends all the way to the quay. This also allows for direct transhipment between train and inland barge, and train and shortsea vessels.
Nick Ahsman, Director of GTS Nederland, said :“The new rail connection will be perfectly integrated into the extensive GTS network that connects via the hub in Piacenza in the south of Italy (Rome, Naples, Bari) and ferry connections to Greece and Turkey, and via Moerdijk in the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom and Ireland.”
Luc Smits, Director of CCT Moerdijk, added: “ The joint preparations by GTS, A2B-online and CCT shows what you can achieve when you really put your shoulder to the wheel and strengthen existing concepts by implementing intermodal solutions. With this new service the current connections will be doubled, and will enable us to offer our mutual customers reliable and efficient intermodal services with a high frequency.”
Moerdijk is also directly connected with the Betuweroute, the dedicated freight line which runs right through the Netherlands in an easterly direction towards Germany. The new services leave Piacenza on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 1900hrs, and take two days. The return legs leave Moerdijk at 18.15hrs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.