Hapag-Lloyd to quit from Cagliari: “CICT stopped to serve container vessels”
Tensions increased in the Sardinian port, where port workers went on a 24-hours strike. Contship Italia did not comment
In a note published on its website, the German carrier Hapag-Lloyd announced that it will no longer call at CICT (Cagliari International Container Terminal), a subsidiary of Contship Italia.
Last April, Hapag-Lloyd had already announced that it planned to transfer its transhipment operations from Cagliari – port of call of MCA’s services with Canada, MGX’s connection with the Gulf of Mexico and Eastern United States, MPS’s connection with Western United States, LEX’s services with Eastern Mediterranean and Egypt – to Livorno, leaving only some feeder services in Sardinia. CICT declared its determination to persuade the Hamburg-based liner to keep at least part of its traffics in Cagliari.
However, the company recently declared that “Hapag-Lloyd is forced to stop acceptance of cargo to/from Cagliari with immediate effect as CICT (Cagliari terminal operator) has stopped to serve container vessels. Hapag-Lloyd is looking for alternative solutions which will be communicated in due time”.
According to the liner, the immediate cancellation of calls at the port of Cagliari is due to the terminal’s decision not to accept vessels anymore.
In fact, in its note, Hapag-Lloyd refers to Contship Italia which, however – when questioned by Ship2Shore – did not make any comments about the matter.
Since the current traffic levels provided by Hapag-Lloyd in Cagliari are not enough to ensure the economic survival of the terminal, CICT is thought to have asked the company to increase volumes, under penalty of the impossibility to keep quays operative and handle the current traffic. As a matter of fact, the German carrier rejected the request.
This adds to the uncertainties related to the future of the port of Cagliari, which in the past months was seriously affected by the confrontation between trade union organizations, the terminal operator within the Eurokai group as well as local and national institutions.
Following the publication of Hapag-Lloyd’s note, Filt Cgil, Fit Cisl and Uiltrasporti trade unions called a strike and picketed the port to protest against the decline of the container terminal and the related employment risks.
Sardinian workers censured “CITC’s and Contship’s deafening silence”, as well as the attitude of the Sardinia Region, which did not implement the necessary procedures to find a solution to the crisis of the port of Cagliari.