Construction of Santiago de Cuba port terminal begins

Santiago de Cuba Bay. Photo: Miguel Rubiera Justiz/AIN

Construction of a new multi-purpose terminal, in Santiago de Cuba’s Guillermón Moncada port, began on January 13, with land surveys on 10 hectares of land west of the city. The project is part of an industrial development zone with financing and advisement provided by the People’s Republic of China

Construction of a new multi-purpose terminal at the Guillermón Moncada port, in the city of Santiago de Cuba, began on January 13, with land surveys carried out on 10 hectares to the west of the city.

The project is part of an industrial development zone with financing and advisement from the People’s Republic of China, in accordance with the updating of Cuba’s economic model, which is promoting foreign investment in Cuba’s second most important port.

Juan Guerra, project manager, stated to AIN that the project has received an unconditional loan of 120 million dollars from the Chinese government, and contracted construction firm CHEC – a subsidiary of China Communications Consorcio Company Limited (CCCC) – responsible for the design, procurement of equipment and construction.

The aim of the project is to build – in three years – a multi-purpose terminal with modern technology, able to process ships of up to 40,000 tons, a 231.15 meter dock, three cranes, two covered warehouses and an open air area for containers.

Given the conditions of the access channel, currently, only 20,000 ton general cargo ships can dock, however, after the bay is dredged 13.6 meters, 40,000 ton ships will also be able to access the port, which will enable approximately 565,000 tons of goods to be processed per year, reported Guerra.

The first contingent of Chinese experts are already in Santiago de Cuba, who together with Cuban specialists began land and sea perforations – in the area being prepared by workers from the Great Piedra Baconao Forestry Entity – at the end of January.

Cuban and Chinese engineers and terrain experts have begun studies of the construction site.

Engineer Wan Zhong Xi, topographer from the Beijing Projects Company, emphasized that the project it progressing well and highlighted that the venture is a demonstration of the links of friendship between his country and Cuba, and the consolidation of socialism as a system.

Ernesto Aguilera, from the research entity associated with the construction, detailed the geological conditions of the site in regards to the structural foundation design, a stage which is currently underway and includes the redesign of the inlets, transfer of equipment, and assessment of laboratory tests.

Leonardo Naranjo, director of the Eastern Port Services Entity, stated that the terminal will be an important space to facilitate the export of goods and services from the country’s five eastern provinces and Camagüey, and encourage the substitution of imports, linking international trade and the domestic economy.

The director noted that the project also includes basic infrastructure, a two-line railway line to transport cargo and the acquisition of some 22 special vehicles such as roll trailers, hopper trucks and loaders.

This project is part of the city’s industrial development to improve operations at the Santiago port, constrained by a growing population.

Meanwhile, preparations are underway to build a marine and recreational promenade, with an improved view of the Caribbean Sea, one of the works organized for the city’s 500th anniversary, which will be celebrated in July. (AIN)

By Maria Antonia Medina/AIN, Granma

January 21, 2015


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