The port is constructing a new berth with an annual capacity of 250,000 TEU and a depth of 15 metres, and larger ships should be able to call by the middle of next year, IHS Media reported citing the remarks of Dmitry Kutateladze, development director of Ruscon, one of Russia's largest transportation companies, in the trade publication RZD-Partner.
He said the terminal would handle calls from mainline service originating in Asia, noting that one issue that will have to be addressed is the imbalance between imports and exports that means many exports will be of empty containers. Despite that, the project is moving ahead as feeder service consolidate and shipowners look for ways to deploy large tonnage to the Black Sea.
Novorossiysk is the second-busiest port in the Black Sea after Constanta, Romania, Mr Kutateladze said.
Traffic at Novorossiysk grew 5.1 per cent year over year in 2016 to 612,410 TEU, while traffic at Constanta increased 3.2 per cent to 711,339 TEU. In the first eight months of this year, Novorossiysk's traffic surged 16.8 per cent to 489,330 TEU. Traffic results for Constanta will be available at the end of the year.
Novorossiysk currently has three international ocean services, with one each from Southeast Asia, India, and Ecuador, along with several local and regional feeder services.