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Reflecting Asia growing utilisation of inland waterways for container transportation, Kalmar recently delivered a DRF450-75S5XS reachstacker specially engineered for barge handling to Vietnam International Container Terminal (VICT). The reachstacker, which has been operating successfully at the Ho Chi Minh City facility for the last several months, is the first of its kind working in Vietnam.

The DRF unit features a 7.5-metre wheelbase, boom nose prolongation for negative handling, an electronic overload detection device, and hydraulic jacks in front of the machine to aid an outreach of eight metres when lifting 28 tonne containers from a barge third row. Cameras were installed on the rear of the cab for easier handling, but more importantly, the devices promote and aid a safer operation. The drivers view the video from an LCD screen located inside the cab.

VICT is located at the crossroads of inland transport serving both road and waterways and helping to connect the rest of the world with Vietnam manufacturing heartland. The boom in barge traffic prompted VICT to purchase a dedicated barge handling machine that also promoted a safe, cost efficient and productive operation. The DRF barge handling unit proved to be the ideal machine because of its versatility, which allows it to work in both barge and normal container stacking operations.

VICT, owned by First Logistics Development (JV) Co – a joint venture between Southern Waterborne Transport Corp (Sowatco) of Vietnam and Mitorient Enterprise – began operating in 1998. Working with four ship-to-shore cranes and reachstackers, VICT handled nearly 450,000 TEUs in 2006.

Asia invests in its waterways
Transporting containers by river barges is gaining recognition across Asia, not least China. The Yangtze River transport corridor, starting in eastern Tibet and winding its way to Shanghai, serves more than 400 million Chinese. Those regions adjacent to the river account for 40 percent of China GDP.

Barges have served as the most reliable and cost effective means of moving commodities along the Yangtze River. With the rapid growth of containerisation, the Chinese government has made many river improvements in recent years to help operators shift capacity from bulk to containerised loads.
The ongoing development of the Yangtze River will fill the critical gaps in the existing road and rail network, placing a demand on inland ports for more container-on-barge service and handling.

Serving customers with experience
Kalmar innovative barge handling reachstacker is the result of a shift in intermodal transport systems in Europe that began in the 1990s. Much of Europe cargo is increasingly containerised and transported by barge to hub ports such as Rotterdam and Antwerp. Inland ports, such as Verbrugge Terminals in Terneuzen, the Netherlands and the Port of Lille in France, use Kalmar reachstackers to safely and efficiently handle the increase in barge traffic.

As the world leading manufacturer of reachstackers, Kalmar is committed to the ongoing development of application-based models, such as the DRF barge handling unit, engineered specifically to serve customers in this rapidly growing sector.

Note to editors

Press information can be found on Kalmar's website: www.kalmarind.com. Simply click on News Room to be taken to a list of recent press releases. A photograph to accompany this release is also available on the Kalmar website, by clicking on Press Pictures. The caption for the photograph reads:

Vietnam International Container Terminal ispromoting cargo by inland waterway with the help of Kalmar DRF450-75S5XS reachstacker, which has been specially engineered for barge handling.

Kalmar is a global provider of container and heavy duty materials handling equipment, automation applications and related services. It is the world's leading supplier of cargo handling equipment to ports, terminals and intermodal facilities.

Every fourth container or trailer transfer at terminals around the world is handled by a Kalmar machine. The company also supplies a wide range of machines to demanding industrial customers for applications as diverse as handling steel and paper to shunting road trailers at distribution hubs. Kalmar is also leading the way in port automation applications with its application of unmanned container handling technology, on-board smart features and remote maintenance products developed in co-operation with customers and partners.

Kalmar product range is complemented by a large range of value added services such as maintenance contracts and fleet management. Production plants are situated in Sweden, Finland, the Netherlands, Malaysia, China and the USA. Kalmar net sales were EUR 1.2 billion in 2006.

Kalmar is part of Cargotec Corporation, the world's leading provider of cargo handling solutions, which are used in local transportation, terminals, ports, distribution centres, and ships. In 2006 Cargotec net sales were EUR 2.6 billion. Cargotec class B shares are listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange.