Southampton Cargo Handling (SCH) has been awarded and started the stevedoring contract to handle all Renault vehicles being shipped into the port of Southampton, in the UK.

The news follows Euro Marine Logistics (EML), a joint venture project between Mitsui OSK Lines and Hoegh Autoliners, winning the shipping contract for about 60,000 Renault vehicles a year into Southampton.

EML is making calls every four days in the port after loading vehicles in France and Spain. SCH will also be responsible for receiving and loading EML cargoes being exported from Southampton.

SCH director, Lee Davis, said: “Our expertise in handling ro-ro cargoes has enabled us to increase the volumes that we handle through Southampton considerably, helping the port’s ro-ro business to grow at the same time as expanding our own business. The Renault business is expected to add nearly 30% to our annual volumes.”

SCH loaded and discharged more than 200,000 units last year. The company says it is on course to surpass that total in 2017.

According to the latest Finished Vehicle Logistics European port survey Southampton port handled a total of 901,000 new vehicles in 2016, with 360,400 of those being imports.

SCH currently carries out stevedoring and other port-related operations in locations including Southampton, Liverpool, Portsmouth and Sheerness.

In June, the company said it had signed a four-year deal with BMW for technical preparation of cars and motorcycles at Southampton and Sywell in the UK.