Morten Johansen

Morten Johansen

Executive Director, DP World Caucedo
Erik Alma

Erik Alma

President, Chairman & CEO, Haina International Terminals

How would you assess your port's main advantages?

ERIK ALMA Haina International Terminals has spent more than $60 million on a very comprehensive infrastructure improvement plan. All access ways have been rebuilt and repaved, the terminal storage area has been completely re-surfaced using concrete blocks, two additional container port cranes were purchased, more than 650 meters of piers have been totally reconstructed, a new multi-lane commercial gate was built, the world's top terminal operating system was implemented, a comprehensive CCTV system was installed, 3 kilometers of perimeter fencing was erected, and the list goes on and on. In short, what we have today is a completely new port that provides significant improvements in security, efficiency, and reliability for all users.

MORTEN JOHANSEN Caucedo is different from any other port in the Dominican Republic. The port has very modern infrastructure, similar to what is seen in European or Asian ports. At the same time, the infrastructure is unique in terms of the land and equipment. At Caucedo, we enjoy naturally deep water with hard rocks below, so we do not have to carry out heavy maintenance or dredging. As a result, we can support big business without any issues. That is a challenge for other ports in the Dominican Republic.

What have been your main actions in preparing for the expansion of the Panama Canal?

EA For us, it is matter of maintaining a clear vision of our target market and deploying the right resources to service them with excellence. The reality is that all economies in the Caribbean and Central America including Dominican Republic are relatively small. You do have some large transshipment ports in the region that can service the long haul and larger ships that will now be able to cross the Panama Canal, but these are unrelated to the scale of the local economies where they reside. At Haina, our focus is on providing a world-class service to local import/export customers, the regional shipping routes, and the feeder vessels from other transshipping points.

MJ We are getting ready to service the types of vessels that will now come through here. The trend of shipping lines is based on economies of scale. The ships are getting bigger and bigger. That requires us to establish the right infrastructure at the terminal, including the right draft for the vessels to call and the right cranes in order to be able to service such vessels. That normally requires large investments, and in some places it is not possible to do. At Caucedo, we are prepared to handle more volume. Should the demand be there in the future from our customers, we also have the possibility to extend our berthing facilities. Today, we have close to 1 kilometer of berth. We can handle another 500 meters at least.

What are your port's future investment priorities?

EA We are right now at the tail end of a very intensive reconstruction phase at the main terminal on the east side of the river. With 1,600 lineal meters of berths, 250,000 sqm of container storage space, low-density layout, and areas still in reserve, we have enough room to accommodate future growth. We will now turn our attention to Haina West, starting with the total reconstruction of 250 meters of berth for general cargo and bulk vessels. With the base infrastructure almost completely revamped, we will also redirect our resources to renovating our mobile equipment fleet in support of our efforts to achieve continuously higher levels of efficiency.

MJ We are considering the development of a logistics center in connection with the port. The port is a free trade zone (FTZ), which is very attractive. To have a FTZ logistics center as well is also very attractive. There are many international companies arriving in the FTZ and operating here. There is a huge local market with good connections from the country to other points in the Caribbean basin. We are looking at developing our logistics center in this very unique location. Having an airport, a logistics center, and a large and modern port is very advantageous.