THE LARGEST containership ever to berth in Papua New Guinea has called at South Pacific International Container Terminal (SPICT) and Motukea International Terminal (MIT).

The 2754-TEU gearless boxship Kota Gabung made its inaugural call in Lae on 12 November and in Motukea, adjacent to Port Moresby, on 17 November.

International Container Services (ICTSI) operates both terminals.

Kota Gabung is operated by Mariana Express Line as part of the North Asia Express (NAX) service, which is a vessel-sharing agreement with Swire Shipping. The NAX service connects eastern and southern China main ports to Papua New Guinea and northern Australia.

 ICTSI South Pacific chief executive officer Robert Maxwell said: “This milestone highlights the growing confidence in ICTSI South Pacific terminals for delivering best-in-class service. It is aligned with our recent strong investment in pursuit of our vision of making our facilities the most modern and efficient port terminals in the Pacific Islands region”.

SPICT is equipped with two post-Panamax ship-to-shore cranes, which can service up to 6000-TEU vessels. The cranes are the first of their kind and currently the largest port equipment in Papua New Guinea.

Additionally, MIT has doubled its waterside capability this year by adding another mobile harbor crane to ensure safer and faster turnaround of ships.

“We appreciate Mariana Express Line, a subsidiary of Pacific International Lines, for the trust in us to ensure the success of this gearless vessel addition to PNG trade. We are looking forward to seeing more gearless vessels being deployed in the future,” Mr Maxwell said.