Craig Collins, Interim Head of Container Terminals Ireland, MTL Dublin made the short hop over the Irish Sea from Glasgow to take up his new role in Ireland. Here he explains what’s been going on at the port in the six months since he started, and where the port is headed.
For the last two decades I’ve been at the sharp end of our operations on the west coast of Scotland, beginning my port career as a documentation clerk and working up to be the terminal manager at Greenock.
Then at the start of 2019 I made the move over to the Irish Sea to Dublin, taking up the position of Interim Deputy Head of Container Terminals in February before moving into the role of Head of Operations in March. During this transitional period, I was greatly assisted by Gerry Luccan, David Williams and Stephen O’Gara the management team at MTL and DCATS and by our two engineering team leaders (John & Paul). Since the turn of the year there’s been a lot of positive change at Marine Terminals Ltd (MTL) – our terminal operating subsidiary - and we’re currently enjoying real momentum.
Since April, as part of Peel Ports UK and Ireland wide recruitment drive, we’ve taken on 17 new port operators in Dublin. Over the last ten years we’ve invested over €30 million in infrastructure and we have several short-sea connections with ports in the Mediterranean and Irish Sea as well as feeder services connecting us with the Far East, India and South America.
This is all part of why we needed the new staff, to push MTL Dublin to the next level given the high growth the port has seen in recent years. 750 metres of quayside, three ship-to-shore cranes and four rail mounted gantry cranes allow some of the largest vessels to call here bringing in imported goods and taking back Irish produce.
Dublin MTL has long been the gateway to the world for Ireland, and with throughput of 200,000 TEUs per year and direct LoLo connections to the UK, the Netherlands, France, Iberia and onwards worldwide it’s easy to see why. Around half of the port’s operations involve exporting well-known Irish produce across the globe, primarily powdered milk, fish, beef and medical goods which all require specialised refrigerated containers. We have over 300 reefer points for refrigerated containers across the terminal and two separate depots within the port estate.
These goods – some of them instantly recognisable as some of Ireland’s top exports - are shipped around the world, primarily to ports in Rotterdam and Liverpool. We also handle imports, making up about 40% of cargo going through the port. Typically, that’s motor bikes, construction materials and food and drink.
With haulage turnaround now less than 20 minutes, importing good into Ireland has never been easier or quicker. Added to this, the swift turnaround of vessels means MTL Dublin is an incredibly attractive port to use. Take BG Freight our Shipping division in Peel for an example. We can now turnaround vessel’s with more than 1000 moves in 30 hours to ensure the cargo makes the connections at other ports such as Rotterdam, Southampton or Liverpool.
We pride ourselves in forging excellent relationships with everyone we work with and have offered tailor-made solutions to all shipping lines.
That in turn is thanks to the skill, experience and positive attitude of our staff. One final recent change within the group is that Ireland is now part of the Clydeport Cluster under the stewardship of Port Director Andrew Hemphill, we know we have a lot to offer at MTL Dublin and are confident that we’ll continue to grow in the years ahead.
To find out more visit Peel Ports Dublin HERE
Or contact: Craig.Collins@peelports.com
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