POM Limburg and Port of Antwerp seal cooperation
POM Limburg and Port of Antwerp have today concluded a cooperation agreement. The objective is to reinforce each other’s economic trumps. Specifically, both parties have committed to create a sustainable connection between the Port of Antwerp and the logistics cluster in Limburg. A “digital highway” is also being created between the two regions.
In the presence of Flemish Minister for Mobility Lydia Peeters, POM Limburg and Port of Antwerp sealed their collaboration today with an official agreement.
“There is no better place to seal a logistical partnership than on the deck of a ship . A place that symbolises the modal shift, which is also one of the ambitions of this excellent partnership,” announced Minister Peeters. “This connection has one common goal: to reinforce each other’s economic trumps and help make logistics companies even more competitive. Transport and logistics are the heart and arteries of a healthy economy. More than ever, the future of logistics is multimodal, with transport by road, rail and water going hand in hand. This will also have a positive impact on jobs, our climate goals and our international attractiveness.”
“Limburg’s central location is one of our main trumps,” explains Deputy for the Economy and Chairman of POM Limburg Tom Vandeput. “Our province is right at the connecting point between the port on the one hand, and the industrialised hinterland and Liege airport on the other. In this way, Limburg forms an important corridor for the Port of Antwerp.” The agreement was therefore appropriately named ‘Scheldt-Meuse Corridor Antwerp-Limburg’.
The ambition is to recognise and reinforce the economic trumps of both parties. Three pillars are key in this regard: information sharing, developing a sustainable connection and digitising the logistics chain.
Port Alderwoman of Port of Antwerp Annick De Ridder: “The growth in scale within container shipping over the past decades has meant that Port of Antwerp has had to be able to ensure the input and output of large bundled volumes. Anchoring the ties between the port and its hinterland and optimising the connections is essential in this regard. This agreement also gives us the opportunity to promote the Limburg region as an asset to the outside world, and to capitalise on the opportunities that the region offers in terms of space, supply of labour, mobility, multimodal infrastructure and sea-air interface.”
Port of Antwerp and POM Limburg are committed to the necessary modal shift from road to barge and rail. Both parties have undertaken to develop sustainable connections between Antwerp and Limburg. Deputy Tom Vandeput: “To guarantee this sustainable connection between the port and our logistics cluster, it is important that both the rail terminals in Limburg and the terminals along the Albert Canal can work as optimally as possible, without obstacles. We are therefore both putting all our weight behind making this multimodal connection a reality.”
A ‘digital highway’ will also be created between Antwerp and Limburg to further optimise the logistics chain between the two regions. Annick De Ridder: “The corona crisis has highlighted around the world the importance and need for further digitisation in the logistics chain. This digital highway will enable all infrastructure managers, shippers and logistics service providers in the corridor to make their logistics chain more visible, flexible, reliable and efficient, thanks to data sharing. This will allow us, as a world port, to respond even better to the challenges of the future.”