Grimaldi Lines has launched its new fortnightly Euro-Aegean ro-ro service with the departure of the Grande Sicilia from Hamburg’s Unikai Terminal bound for Alexandria, Egypt.
The Grande Sicilia will be joined by sister ship the Grande Italia and both are equipped to load a range of ro-ro units including automobiles, construction machines and project cargo, with item weights of up to 75 tons. The eleven decks of the Grande Sicilia can carry up to 4,500 vehicles.
The ships will call at Setubal, Valencia, Leghorn, Civitavecchia, Salerno, Piraeus, Beirut, Lattkia (when carrying sufficient cargo), Gemlik and Alexandria.
The new service is part of a wider service expansion that Grimaldi is pursuing despite the tough conditions plaguing other freight forwarders faced with idling portions of their container and ro-ro fleets.
The company’s Managing Director, Emanuele Grimaldi told Lloyd’s List this week that the entire Grimaldi fleet will be employed in 2009 following a strong 2008 when the deep-sea transatlantic services and ACL had performed particularly well. He also said the company will purchase seven multipurpose ro-ro vessels (on a €400m order from the Uljanik yard in Croatia) for delivery this year and into 2010.