The MSC Gulsun, currently the world’s largest container ship, docked today for the first time at the MSC Gate Terminal in Bremerhaven. Following a construction period of around three years, the ship was taken into operation by the owner Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) on July 4 and put into scheduled service (Silk Service) between Asia and Europe. With a length of 399.9 metres, a width of 61.55 metres, a draught of up to 16.5 metres and a transport capacity of more than 23,000 standard containers (TEUs), the MSC Gulsun surpasses the current record holder, OOCL’s G-class.
“The dimensions of this new ship class are imposing and represent the next step in ever larger ship sizes,” said Friedrich Stuhrmann, managing director of MSC Gate. “The privilege to be a fixed port of call on the maiden voyage of such a mega vessel is really exciting for all concerned. MSC Gate already handles several ships a week in MSC’s Pegasus class and Maersk’s Triple-E class, and therefore demonstrates its performance capacity on a weekly basis. We also have the capability to handle this new ship class.”
Robert Howe, managing director of the port management company bremenports, said: “The first port call at the MSC Gate Terminal demonstrates that Container Terminal Bremerhaven is capable of offering the next generation of container ships a custom-fit infrastructure. We will continue to be a reliable and competent partner in the competition between locations. To do so, we will need to carry out further adjustment measures on the quaysides. Together with the terminal operators, we are gearing ourselves up for this.”
The MSC Gulsun is the first of 11 ships in total in the so-called MSC Megamax-24 class, which MSC has commissioned from two South Korean shipyards. A sister ship, the MSC Mina, is also currently on its maiden voyage from eastern Asia to Europe. It is also scheduled to call at Bremerhaven, probably on September 9.