Ships are the port’s lifeline. Every day of the year, dozens of vessels from around the world call at our port to load or unload many different types of products, which are then shipped to customers in overseas territories or the European hinterland.

Incentives for more sustainable vessels

The port is investing in the greening of these vessels. A few examples:

  • Environmentally-friendly vessels receive a discount on port dues, which is calculated based on their ESI score. The Environmental Ship Index (ESI) is a non-compulsory index that evaluates whether an ocean-going vessel’s performance (for nitrogen, sulphur and CO2) is better than the norm. The higher the vessel’s score, the higher the discount it receives. The Antwerp Port Authority launched this incentive to support pioneers that invest in technological innovation. From 2015 until 2017, vessels that switched to LNG or used a closed loop scrubber system when entering the port (to lower air pollution) received a particulate matter discount.
  • The port is investing in infrastructure to meet the needs of these green vessels. Truck-to-ship transfer is used for in-port bunkering of LNG-fuelled ships and the port is currently considering the construction of an installation for ship-to-ship bunkering.
  • Antwerp anticipated on the future by installing onshore power supplies when building the container terminals in Deurganck Dock. As a result, ocean-going vessels can shut down their own, more polluting generators when in port, relying on the less polluting energy of the onshore power supplies instead.

The advantages of shortsea transport

In addition to rail, pipelines and inland navigation, shortsea is also a vital element in sustainable throughput. That is why we are investing in the further development of reliable and fast shortsea services. We hope this will also be an incentive for a modal shift, taking trucks off the road, with the support of European measures. Besides offering several advantages in terms of sustainability, shortsea also saves users substantial amounts of money on the logistics level.

  • Antwerp is a major shortsea and feeder port. The port is situated 80 km closer to the largest European consumption and production centres, compared with any other port in the Hamburg-Le Havre range, because of its unique location.  Fewer kilometres, less CO2, lower transport costs. 
  • Shortsea has sufficient transport capacity to efficiently and seamlessly exchange large quantities of freight between the port and the hinterland.