KOPER – The quayside at the southern end of Pier I in the Port of Koper has been extended by 100 metres. Yesterday, in the presence of Minister of Infrastructure Jernej Vrtovec, the new quayside was ceremonially handed over. The new berth, named Link 7D, is just a part of significant investment as Luka Koper continue to build a container storage area of almost 25,000 m2 in the quayside’s hinterland. Construction is taking place offshore, so the entire structure is supported by steel piles. The new storage areas should be ready in the first quarter of next year. The annual capacity of the container terminal will then be one and a half million TEUs. The total investment is worth 45.6 million euros: part of the funding was obtained from the European NAPA4CORE project. «The containerisation of goods in world trade has reached unprecedented proportions. Shipowners are building bigger and bigger ships, and ports need to adapt to this. Otherwise, we would be out of all major commodity flows. That is why the new acquisition, the new Link 7D, is only the beginning,» said the CEO of the Port of Koper, Dimitrij Zadel. Given that half of all containers handled in Koper today (almost one million Teus in 2020) already travel by rail, the future development of the Port of Koper is waiting for an additional rail link to the hinterland. The so-called second track will be operational in 2026. The Port of Koper has also ordered two new Super-post-Panamax container cranes (there are already two), which will arrive at the end of next year. In addition, after 2022, they will start building the northern part of Pier I, which will also be dedicated to containers. Container-handling activity at Pier I started in 1979 when the first 150 m of quay were built. Since then, including the latest extension, the operational quay has been lengthened four times. Today, the container quay is almost 700 m long, and there are nine container cranes in operation. Next year, there will be 11. In four decades, the Port has handled almost 12 million Teus at Pier I, two-thirds of them in the last ten years. In terms of containers handled, the Port of Koper operates the largest terminal in the Adriatic.