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World's largest containership arrives in Asia

Singapore: The world's largest containership made her maiden call in Asia at PSA's Pasir Panjang Terminal (PPT) in Singapore yesterday, sailing on Maersk Line's AE1 (Europe-Far East) service. Other Asian calls will include Kobe, Nagoya, Yokohama, Yantian, Hong Kong and Tanjung Pelepas (PTP).

Emma Maersk has a declared capacity of 11,000teu but comparing her dimensions with other ultra large containerships has led analysts to suggest she may be able to carry as many as 13,500teu.  The first of her class from the Odense Steel Shipyard in Denmark, the vessel measures 397 metres, 56 metres in width and includes a number of pioneering environmental features.

Singapore's Minister for Transport, Raymond Lim, presented the a special plaque to commemorate the inaugural call at Singapore, and PSA International group ceo Eddie Teh publicly thanked Maersk for the opportunity "to be part of this landmark occasion" and said PSA looked forward to continuing to service the vessel in the future. The local authorities and PSA further honoured group boss Maersk Mc-Kinney Møller by naming a specially selected orchid in honour of his late wife, after whom the vessel was christened. The moves were interpreted by the local press as something of a "peace offering," Maersk having famously switched some of its Singapore calls to nearby PTP five years ago.

Meanwhile, PSA reports that its expansion plan at PPT is well on track - six new berths have already been commissioned, and another nine will be progressively phased in by 2011. When completed, PPT will have a total of 21 state of-the-art berths with depths of up to 16 metres, and fleets of super-post Panamax quay cranes capable of handling 22-rows across. Currently, Singapore Terminals has a total of 43 berths equipped with 139 quay cranes.  [03/10/06]

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