Mexico plans massive expansion of Manzanillo seaport

Mexico’s government has announced a plan to double the capacity of the country’s busiest port by equipping it with four additional terminals.

The Port of Manzanillo, which handles cargo coming into Mexico City from the Pacific Ocean, is presently able to handle 3.5 million containers a year. The federal government, together with operator API-Manzanillo and the state government of Colima, is planning a $1.2bn project to add facilities for handling grain, minerals and oil, as well as a container terminal capable of processing 1.75 million containers.

The expansion would be sited on the Cuyutlan Lagoon, where Manzanillo’s port authority has already been carrying out dredging and channel-clearing operations. In the future, it plans to add five dams to prevent the accumulation of silt and to modernise the Agua de Salagua water treatment plant.

The port presently trades with 74 other ports around the world. It presently has 14 terminals handling containers and bulk products such as cement, fertilizers, petroleum products, wheat, fish oil, palm oil, and refrigerated foods and fluids. It also has a cruise terminal.

During the first five months of this year, Manzanillo handled 13.5 million tons of cargo and 1.2 million containers – respectively, 1% and 5% higher than the same period last year.

The project will be part of a national programme to improve the country’s 117 ports, to which the government has allocated some $5bn.

Image: Manzanillo, in the Pacific state of Colima (Dreamstime)

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