Maersk Line, the world's largest shipping company, announced the expansion of its product portfolio between Europe's Mediterranean region and Canada to cater for the growing demands of importers and exporters on both sides of the Atlantic.
The exclusive, fully Maersk Line-operated weekly service will be a five-vessel rotation stopping in Salerno and La Spezia (Italy), Fos-sur-Mer (France), Algeciras (Spain), Montreal and Halifax (Canada), and Valencia (Spain).
Other Mediterranean markets will also be conveniently connected to the new service thanks to our integrated transhipment services in Algeciras and Valencia, with consistent products to/from the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. The exclusive Maersk-operated service, the Mediterranean-Montreal Express, will have its first sailing on July 2nd, departing from Salerno, Italy, and arriving in Montreal on July 19th.
Jack Mahoney, President of Maersk Line Canada adds: "with one agreement in effect to fuel Canadian imports and exports in the Atlantic and another one in the works for the Pacific, this represents only favourable wind behind the expansion of our services in Canada and enable our customers to reach new markets in Europe and Asia."
Last year, Canadian imports and exports grew 6.9%, a barometer of economic health and prosperity for the country. For 2018, Maersk forecasts a growth of 7% in maritime container volume with CETA and CPTPP accords expected to further support this development in both transatlantic and transpacific trades.
In addition, Maersk expects to see another year of healthy growth for Middle East, India, Pakistan, and Far East imports which grew above 9% in 2017 to Canada's East Coast.
Based on feedback from customers, and its geographic location, Montreal was a natural choice for Maersk Line as a strategic gateway for this service. The Port of Montreal is well positioned to serve consumers in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec where two thirds of the Canadian population reside.
"The Port of Montreal serves these two regions via rail and trucking service for this large market, where 49% of discharged cargo go to Quebec and further 29% to Ontario. The port, therefore, plays a key role in boosting Canadian trade and is a perfect match for importers and exporters looking for better transportation solutions with Canada," mentioned Sylvie Vachon, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Montreal Port Authority.
The new service will call Montreal's Cast terminal, operated by MGT, which is conveniently located closest to the ocean and offers easy access to rail and trucking options.
In addition, the service will make an Eastbound call in Halifax, Nova Scotia, catering for an important Canadian perishable market and facilitating refrigerated shipments of foodstuff traditionally exported from Canadian Maritime Provinces.