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Esbjerg is Denmark’s largest port on the west coast

PORTS: Esbjerg is Denmark’s largest port on the west coast. The Port of Esbjerg is planning major investments to become Denmark’s new intermodal transport centre

The city of Esbjerg lies on the Danish west coast, facing the British Isles across the North Sea. A century ago it was no more than a collection of fishing huts, but today it is Denmark’s fifth largest city. The cause of the transformation was the harbour, which was constructed for the purposes of Denmark’s first major export initiative: Bacon and butter to Great Britain.

Since then the Port of Esbjerg has grown into one of Denmark’s largest. Agricultural exports to Great Britain are now only part of the picture. Today the development of the port is equally the result of offshore activities in the North Sea, rapidly increasing transit exports from the entire Baltic area, ferries to both Britain and the continent and as a port of departure for Denmark’s massive exports of wind turbines.

“North Sea traffic to and from the Port of Esbjerg will, together with offshore traffic to the oil and gas fields in the North Sea, continue to be the activities, which drive the port’s growth,” says port director Ole Ingrisch. “We are planning to invest over EUR 140 million on a brand new south harbour and a high efficiency combi-terminal, as well as extending and modernising the existing quay system. The Port of Esbjerg will become Denmark’s new intermodal transport centre.” The aim is to increase the amounts of goods shipped from the current 4 to 5 million tons. Specific investments will include a back-up service to the current crane capacity with Scandinavia’s largest mobile crane, which can lift 150 tons. Another investment is a completely new quay, specially designed for drilling rigs, together with additional areas associated with the construction of a new wind turbine park in the North Sea.

“The offshore industry is increasingly bringing drilling rigs to the Port of Esbjerg for modernisation and maintenance, and we have built up considerable competences in this field,” says Ingrisch. Out of a total industry workforce of around 10,000, almost 7,000 work in Esbjerg. On top of that there is all the offshore industry logistics. We have supply ships to the North Sea that sail up to 70 times a month. And two helicopter companies operate a daily service to the North Sea installations.”

This page forms part of the publication 'FOCUS Denmark' as chapter 20 of 23
Version 1. 22-05-2007
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