Two big news for Ekol, partnering with P&O Ferries and Hupac
The Turkish logistics operator opens a new block train between Belgium and Italy after launching the ro-ro Fadiq for maritime subsidiary Alternative Transport
Just three weeks after opening a block train connecting Budapest, Hungary with Cologne, Germany – that was the first train solution in its East-West corridor - Ekol Logistics is announcing the launch of a new block train between Zeebrugge, Belgium and Trieste, Italy, thus continuing to support its network expansion in the South-North corridor in order to link its strategic markets.
“We keep executing our strategy to offer more and more intermodal connections inside Europe. We connected the Mediterranean with the Baltic through the Trieste (Italy) – Kiel (Germany) train in January 2017, and now we are glad to offer our customers a new direct connection between the Mediterranean and the North Sea. This will be the first direct train to connect Turkey, Iran and the Middle East with the Benelux countries, France and the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland) in a totally green mode without using a single driver” stressed Alaa Jennane, Ekol Director of Engineering Business Development.
The new train will leave EMT Trieste Terminal two times per week and will transport different types of equipment (Mega trailers, containers and swap bodies). Last year Ekol acquired majority shares of EMT and announced the development of more intermodal connections from Trieste.
“Thanks to cooperation with Zeebrugge port and our strategic partner P&O Ferries we can transport shipments using P&O Ferries to different key regions in England (Tilbury, Hull, Teesport) and to other destinations with further partners” Jennane added.
This service will be operated by Swiss combined transport specialist Hupac and is expected to carry around 5,000 shipments per year for Ekol. “We are pleased to welcome Ekol on this new intermodal line; together with all parties involved, we managed to develop a cutting-edge service to directly connect Turkey with the UK with competitive transit-times. Hupac deploys its own modern wagon fleet and manages the day-to-day train operations; this new service shows again that multimodal can be a great alternative to pure road transport” Renzo Capanni, Hupac Director, said.
“We are delighted to announce the launch of this new train to further enhance our integrated rail and ferry service linking the whole continent of Europe with Britain. We expanded operation at Zeebrugge last year and now we have capacity for 700,000 units per year, continuing to grow” stated Janette Bell, P&O Ferries Managing Director.
“Intermodality is of high value to our port; Zeebrugge encourages and supports intermodal business solutions between water and rail. The launch of this Ekol block train is a reinforcement of our connections to Italy and further destinations and is an expansion of the complete offer of direct and indirect intermodal connections in Zeebrugge” pinpointed Joachim Coens, Port of Zeebrugge CEO.
In a parallel development, lately Ekol expanded also its ro-ro fleet when its maritime subsidiary Alternative Transport could see its new ‘baby’ Fadiq – sistership to 4,076-lanemetre Meleq, in turn delivered in April this year – meeting with the water at Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft (FSG) shipyard in Germany for the launching ceremony attended also by the group’s founder and owner Ahmet Musul.
The newbuilding Fadiq, after outfitting, will be finally delivered to its Turkish customer in 2018, being 210 meters long, approximately 20 meters longer than Alternative Transport other three ships, this meaning additional capacity (worth 280 trailers intake that can increase up to 340 when employing the two-fold container load project brought to Turkey. The average speed of the ro-ro vessel is 19 miles with a maximum speed of 21.3 nautical miles.