Patron members of Wirral Chamber of Commerce, Peel Ports Group, has started work on the second phase of expansion at its £400m Liverpool2 deep-water shipping terminal.
The company, which owns the wider Port of Liverpool, plans to invest in equipment, infrastructure and port technology as it grows the facility.
Phase two will include the installation of three additional ship-to-shore cranes (STS) and 10 cantilever rail-mounted gantry cranes (CRMG).
The new infrastructure will add to the five STS cranes and 12 CRMG cranes installed during phase one of Liverpool2, which opened in November last year.
Once the second phase is complete, the terminal will have the capacity to manage the simultaneous unloading of two 380m vessels.
Peel will also install additional reefer points, enabling it to handle even more refrigerated containers at the Port of Liverpool.
Mark Whitworth, chief exec of Peel Ports, said: “This is an important step in the development of Liverpool2 and reflects our confidence and our long-term commitment to positioning the North of England as a competitive route to international markets and a major port for global trade.
“The world-class facilities which we have at Liverpool2 will allow us to capture and grow a greater share of the container market, offering cargo owners in the North of the country a more competitive route to market, getting their goods closer to their end destination.”
He added: “We are in a good place in our discussions with shipping lines; there are more opportunities on the horizon at the Port and our confidence is high as a result.”
Mr Whitworth said Peel is currently preparing the outline designs and is hoping to appoint building partners in Spring 2018, with a view to starting construction shortly after.
Completion of phase two is due at some point in 2019.