The arrival of the ‘CMA CGM WHITE SHARK’ in Hamburg on 9 January 2021 marked the start of the new ‘NC LEVANT EXPRESS’ container liner service. A total of five containerships with slot capacities of between 3,800 and 4,200 TEU – 20-ft standard containers – are deployed on the service operated by the CMA CGM shipping line. This gives the Port of Hamburg an additional service with ports in Turkey.
The Turkish ports of Mersin and Iskenderun will be served on the ‘NC LEVANT EXPRESS’ service by weekly sailings handled in Hamburg by EUROGATE Container Terminal. After Hamburg, the ports called are Antwerp, Le Havre, Tangier, Malta, Alexandria, Damietta, Beirut, Mersin, Iskenderun, Algeciras, Southampton, Rotterdam.
“With the new ‘NC LEVANT EXPRESS’, we offer attractive transit times and excellent opportunities for transport between two important Turkish ports, the Eastern Med and five key ports in Europe. Hamburg is its Northern hub, splendidly located with its dense network of feeder services. Import and export cargoes can rapidly be transhipped onto or from feeders with Scandinavia and other countries in the Baltic region for onward shipment,” says Peter Wolf, CEO of CMA CGM (Deutschland).
Despite restrictions caused by the corona pandemic, container services between Hamburg and Turkish ports have managed to grow against the trend. In the first three quarters of 2020, a total of 114,000 TEU were handled in Hamburg in container traffic with ports in Turkey, an 18.8 percent increase.
“We are delighted to have this new liner service in the Port of Hamburg. The trend in seaborne foreign trade with Turkey is extremely positive. Even before corona, in 2019 container transport between Hamburg and Turkey at 132,000 TEU, and seaborne cargo handling of 2.2 million tons, set a new handling record. We are also expecting a fresh record for 2020,” says Axel Mattern, Joint CEO of Port of Hamburg Marketing.
A total of nine liner services connect Hamburg with ports in Turkey. These consist of six container services, two multi-purpose services, and one vehicle service. The container services and the vehicle transport service run weekly. The multi-purpose services call Hamburg monthly and whenever required. Depending on direction and rotation, transit times between Hamburg and the Turkish ports are between ten and 14 days.
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