May 2013 is a historical date for the port of Klaipėda as a record breaking dredging works of the port channel were accomplished, which shifted the port to a new qualitative level.
The record breaking dredging works „The Capital Dredging and Widening of Klaipėda State Seaport Navigation Channel“ took 1 year and were implemented by the world famous Dutch company Van Oord Dredging and Marine Contractors BV. Following the contract agreement this company dredged 4.432 million cubic metres of soil, which amounts to 127.297 million Litas (approx. 37 million EUR).
“I am pleased to admit that it is the biggest in scale, scope and value contract in the Port history. Moreover, of special gratitude is the fact that our contractor accomplished the works in due time,” said Director General Arvydas Vaitkus.
The capital dredging and widening of the Port navigation channel project is vitally important to Klaipėda Port. After the implementation of this project the width of the Port navigation channel increased up to 150 metres (from 120 metres) and the depth respectively up to 14.5 metres (from 13-13,5 metres). Hence the safety of gross tonnage vessels entering and leaving the Port and manoeuvring is already more enhanced in line with competitiveness and cargo handling capacity of the Port itself comparing to the neighbouring ports.
Such Port Navigation Channel parameters create favourable conditions to receive longer and wider postpanamax type vessels 300-310 metres in length, 40 metres in beam and with a max 13.4 metres draught.
The project was implemented using EU assistance funds, which amounted to 81.467 million Litas (approx. 24 million EUR).
Press Release, May 28, 2013