The phase I of the USD 900 million semi-automated deep-water Lázaro Cárdenas Terminal 2 (TEC2) project at Mexico’s second-busiest container port will open soon with 750 meters of quay and 1.2 million TEU annual throughput capacity, according to APM Terminals.
The company said that it has forged ahead with the project despite lagging global and regional Latin American economic growth, and sluggish global container shipping growth rates, with the full expectation that the 1.2 million TEU annual throughput capacity added to Mexico’s port infrastructure will have an immediate impact on Mexico’s trade growth.
“Mexico is not only the second-largest economy in Latin America, but also one of the world’s Top 15 manufacturing economies, including having become one of the world’s top five car makers, and we feel that investing in Mexico’s continuing economic and trade progress is a sound business strategy,” notes APM Terminals CEO Kim Fejfer, who toured the TEC2 site on Mexico’s Pacific Coast earlier this week.
At full build-out, TEC2 is projected to double the quayside to 1,485 meters, increase the number of STS cranes from seven to fifteen, and more than double annual throughput capacity to 4.1 million TEUs.
APM Terminals is investing into the country is it wants to tap into the country’s projected economy growth, which according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), will rise by 2.6% in 2016 and by 2.9% in 2017.
Manufacturing, and the supply of components destined for Mexican factories for assembly and export to the USA as well as overseas, has become an increasingly important sector of Mexico’s USD 1.16 trillion economy since the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) linked the US, Canadian and Mexican markets 22 years ago.
The USA is the destination of 78.8% of Mexican exports, and also provides 49.1% of Mexico’s imports, followed by China (16.1%) and Japan (4.5%).
Mexican ports handled a combined 5.4 million TEUs in 2015, reflecting a growth rate of 7%, far outperforming global container market growth of just over 1% for the year. Throughput at the Port of Lázaro Cárdenas rose by 6% in 2015 to 1.05 million TEUs, trailing only Manzanillo, with 2.4 million TEUs handled in 2015.