Contship Italia to close permanently in Cagliari
Hapag Lloyd’s decision to divert containers, jointly with Spanish and North African ports’ competition, was a crucial issue for the company
On Monday 17th , shareholders assembly substantiated former decision made by the board, finally destroying over 200 workers and Sardinia ancillary services suppliers' hopes which confided Cagliari International Container Terminal would not shut down.
Sarroch Major, Salvatore Mattana, also representing Cacip Consortium, minority shareholder (8%) in CICT, confirmed local press that Contship announced having produced overall 44,000 TEU in 2018, recording 2 million Euro loss and were unable to find a new global liner after Hapag Lloyd determined leaving the port.
“We rejected collective redundancy projects and redundancy procedure, asking for alternatives, like temporary redundancy funds and solidarity contracts, however we were told no financial resources were available”, added Mattana.
As envisaged, after the Board assembly, the company announced they attempted to find a new customer until March 2019 when CMA CGM replied that Cagliari “is worth as much as Malta, but for the time being we are not interested in the port, we might be in a couple of years”.
The report outlines how no further short-term business agreements were sealed and Hpag Lloyd made their final decision to stop calling at Cagliari.
Although Contship Italia hasn't formally announced the fact, reliable sources confirmed this was a particularly sad and difficult decision for the management.
Major customers (Hapag Lloyd) determined diverting their business to other hubs which definitely offer different peculiarities (CICT is located on an island with 1.5 million inhabitants and few overseas connections); furthermore other neighbouring transhipment ports (particularly Spanish ones) clarify the whole framework.
Since February 2019 Contship started evaluating alternative scenarios although none of them turned into effective results and due to the above, workers will shortly receive the first redundancy notice.
Meanwhile Sardinia region will attempt persuading Contship Italia to take a backward step: President
Christian Solinas asked the government to call an urgent table “to find a solution”.
Solinas also added they need to meet the Prime Minister and all involved ministries.
“We confide that CICT could negotiate an accord with Sardinia Port Authority without preventing the Government's commitment through solutions already adopted in other Italian ports”.