The Tangier Mediterranean Special Agency (TMSA) has awarded contracts for two major packages on the estimated $1,000 million project to develop the Tangier-Mediterranean (TangMed) deepwater port.

A consortium of German/Italian port operator Eurogate-Contship with the local Comanav, Switzerland’s MSCand France’s CMA-CGM has been awarded the concession to operate the second container terminal. The group saw off competition from a team of Hong Kong-based operator Hutchisonand the local IMTCfollowing the submission of final offers on 23 September (MEED 24:6:05).

Under the terms of the 30-year concession, Eurogate-Contship will take a 40 per cent stake in the concession company and the other three consortium members 20 per cent each. The group has committed to open the terminal in October 2008 and invest more than Eur 120 million ($144 million) by 2010. Total investment during the lifetime of the concession is estimated at Eur 300 million ($360 million). The consortium has also agreed to use a large proportion of the 1.5 million 20-foot equivalent-unit capacity of the terminal and to create local maritime companies with a total of at least six ships for regional container transport throughout the life of the concession.

Bourbon Maritime, a subsidiary of France’s Bourbon,has also signed the 25-year concession to provide towage and salvage facilities at the port. The company has committed to invest MD 240 million ($26.3 million) in the provision of four new tugboats. The boats will be equipped with modern facilities to tackle fire and pollution and will have the capability to operate on the high seas.

Towage and salvage services will begin on 1 April 2007, three months before the port’s first container terminal now under development by a consortium of Denmark’s Maersk and the local Akwa Holding, is due to open in July. Once the two container terminals are operational, they will provide a 1,612-metre container quay, giving the new port the potential to become an important Mediterranean hub (MEED 3:12:04).