Taiwan’s Wan Hai Lines will spend TW$4 billion (US$155 million) on refurbishing three piers of Kaohsiung Port’s Terminal No. 5, which it has taken over from compatriot Evergreen Marine Corporation.
The amount is less than the US$253 million previously estimated by Wan Hai, which processes 1 million TEU annually in Kaohsiung.
Wan Hai said in a Taiwan Stock Exchange filing that compatriot construction firm Dong Pi has been selected to carry out the works. The berths and container yard will receive a facelift while new bridge cranes and gantry cranes will be installed to make loading and unloading more efficient.
Wan Hai will lease the terminal for 20 years after signing the contract with Taiwan International Ports Corporation (TIPC) on 12 January. Lease payments over the two decades are expected to total approximately US$293 million. Evergreen shifted its Kaohsiung operations to the newly opened Terminal No. 7.
With water depths of 14 metres to 15 metres, Wan Hai plans to use Terminal No. 5 to strengthen its ocean-going services, having launched solo services to the US West Coast and US East Coast in the last two years. The facility will cater to the fleet of 13,000 TEU ships that Wan Hai has recently ordered from Hyundai Heavy Industries and Samsung Heavy Industries, enabling the company to carry out transhipments.
Wan Hai said that it has been seeking to diversify its operations, including investment in terminals in Vietnam and India, adding that these investments have been profitable.
ASEAN economies continue to grow, and thus, Wan Hai will keep seeking opportunities in this region, said the company.