The company's unit, ICTSI South Pacific International Container Terminal (SPICT), which was awarded a 25-year concession to operate the Port of Lae, has started operations after receiving respective approvals from the government of Papua New Guinea, it said in a press release.
SPICT will begin the process of taking over full operations with the immediate rollout of its new Navis N4 terminal operating system. This is the first step in the development of the port's relatively undeveloped infrastructure to build it into a South Pacific hub for ICTSI, the company said.
Christian Gonzalez, ICTSI head of Asia Pacific said the next few weeks would be a difficult transition to bring about the quick adoption of N4 to the working environment. “With the support of the local port users and our international shipping partners, we believe that the benefits of automating processes and information flow will accrue to each and every one of the port’s users very quickly,” he said.
The Navis terminal operating system, is a commonly used system among major port operators and will bring a new level of modern port operations to Papua New Guinea. Better container terminal planning and operations management will help to streamline the flow of information at Lae’s international container terminal and also boost port operations and landside productivity.
SPICT is also continually investing in the project, pumping in some 3m PNG Kina ($928,510) for information technology systems and infrastructure.
The operator is working towards the full operation of the terminal with the arrival of mobile harbour cranes (MHCs) in April.
As part of its operational ramp-up, SPICT will over the next few months roll out modules and orient port users at Lae, while handling all international cargo at the LTB and the dedicated second berth in Lae old wharf.
ICTSI expects a full and stable suite of modules to be operational and ready when the terminal's MHCs arrive in April. The new cranes are expected to boost productivity at Lae, as well as enable previously unavailable vessel handling capabilities in Papua New Guinea.
ICTSI entered into a 25-year terminal operations agreement with state-owned PNG Ports Corp for Papua New Guinea’s largest container handling facility, the Port of Lae, in July last year.