VICTORIA International Container Terminal’s parent company, International Container Terminal Services, has mooted a proposal to expand the Melbourne terminal to include the nearby Webb Dock North.

Port of Melbourne has indicated a container terminal at Webb Dock North is a possibility in its “port capacity enhancement program”, which works on the assumption that the port would need extra container capacity by 2030.

Port of Melbourne CEO Saul Cannon said ensuring port capacity meets demand is part of its stewardship obligations to the state.

“We’re currently engaging with stakeholders about the next stage of capacity, and that is our focus,” he said.

“Any future processes about who would develop a fourth container terminal would be an open market process with full probity.”

Under its proposal, ICTSI would undertake a phased development of the Webb Dock North Container Terminal and integrate its operations with VICT.

ICTSI said the design would deliver higher operating efficiencies at a lower development cost.

The development would increase VICT’s container capacity to 3.7 million TEU, allowing for four container berths with the ability to service vessels up to 14,000 TEUs and up to 367 metres in length.

In a press release, ICTSI executive vice president Christian Gonzalez said Victoria’s growing economy presents the Port of Melbourne with the opportunity to consolidate its position as Australia’s number-one container port.

“ICTSI is keen to solidify its partnership with the Port of Melbourne to deliver the lowest cost, most efficient and environmentally sustainable solution,” Mr Gonzalez said.

“Our vision for this operation is in lockstep with that of the Port of Melbourne’s own vision as it examines strategies to expand capacity and facilitate the growth of Victorian economy.”

Mr. Gonzalez said preliminary discussions had been held with the Port of Melbourne and its owners, as well as the Victorian government and other key industry stakeholders.

He said ICTSI has made it clear that it is ready and confident to test its proposal in any competitive process that the Port of Melbourne requires under its plans for the future of Webb Dock.