CZ/SK verze

"Intermodal Connections are Crucial for Growth," Highlights Dariusz Mierkiewicz, Port of Koper

&quote;Intermodal Connections are Crucial for Growth,&quote; Highlights Dariusz Mierkiewicz, Port of Koper
photo: RAILTARGET/Dariusz Mierkiewicz
29 / 01 / 2024

In an exclusive interview with RAILTARGET, Dariusz Mierkiewicz, the Business Development Manager at Port of Koper, shared his valuable insights on the current dynamics and future potential of the Port of Koper. The discussion unfolded at the 12th edition of the 'Railway Systems/Intermodal Forum' conference, organized by OLTIS Group in Polish Wisla, against the backdrop of evolving global logistics challenges and the role of intermodal transport.

Since you're from the Port of Koper, I would like to ask you about the current situation there. What about the capacities and values?

Firstly, I would like to summarize 2022, which was for all ports, especially the European ones, very challenging. But we are very successful, meaning the increase in TEUs in containers and final vehicles. The new records are in place, so we are very happy. But this is because of the new investments, which are partially already in place, like the first part of the container terminal is ready, giving us much more possibilities for the loading, discharging, and storage of the containers. And, of course, the yachts prepared for the new vehicles. Those are definitely the most important points from our point of view.

What do you think about the development of intermodal transport in Poland?

In fact, it's very interesting for us, the intermodal connection from and to Poland. There are many projects. Unfortunately, during the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, many projects are on hold. They're somewhere, but not realized in real life yet. However, what we've already got is one more rail operator with a direct connection from Koper to the Port of Gdynia and Port of Gdansk. I think it's crucial to highlight that in the Port of Koper, the turnover is over 50 percent belongs to rail, so yes, we need intermodal connections for sure.

Where do you see more potential for the development of cooperation with the railways in the framework of intermodal transport?

First of all, we don't highlight intermodal as just intermodal, because Port of Koper is very strong in the automotive business. We have a lot of vehicles going through the port. So for us, the rail as it is, is vital. One of the challenges right now is outside of the port. By that, I mean the reconstruction of the old line. The second challenge is that we are waiting for the new line, which will be ready in the next two years. It will completely positively change our situation, so we are waiting for this new line.

Green Deal is a huge topic. How could we make ports greener?

You know, Slovenia is a green country. Port of Koper is, obviously, a part of Slovenia, so we feel like this is not just a market or something we are forced to do. We simply feel many things that should be done. As we've discussed with the panel, there's one huge issue with the fuel for the future powering of the vessels. It is the top discussion right now all over the ports, what kind of new fuel will we see in the future? And the new investments, in fact, will be based on which one will be the best and most popular one. Then, we will be able to make a structure out of it. The main pollution is, unfortunately, created by the vessels.