In Brazil, the Luiz Antonio Mesquita Port Terminal Integrator (Tiplam), part of the VLI logistics operations in the port of Santos, has opened its new sulphur warehouse, thereby doubling storage capacity. This has resulted in 84% of the expansion of Tiplam now being complete.

By the end of the year, the terminal plans to start handling agribulk, such as soya, corn, bran and sugar and, by the beginning of next year, it should also start handling fertilizer.

The terminal is located on the banks of the Piac¸aguera Canal, next to the Usiminas quay.

In total, $818 million is being spent on expanding Tiplam, with the project to be completed in July 2017.

The new sulphur warehouse can handle up to 66,000 tonnes of this product. It also has another warehouse capable of handling up to a further 60,000 tonnes.

With two new berths to be put into operation by the end of the year, one of which of handle sugar and the other grain, throughput at Tiplam will increase from 2.5,t (million tonnes) to 14.5mt per annum.

According to the director-president of VLI, Marcello Spinelli, the terminal will be able to make extensive use of the 14km of rail sidings that the port of Santos has, thereby making the movement of dry bulk consignments much more efficient. In fact, movement by rail will replace around 1,400 trucks a day. There will be wagon discharge facilities at the terminal, which will allow up to six trains a day to be handled without there being any serious impact on the surrounding residential area.

The expansion project at Tiplam involves the creation of three new berths, of which two will handle sugar and grain, while the third will specialize in discharging consignments of fertilizer. This will give the terminal total of four berths. At present, the existing berth handles a combination of sulphur, phosphate rock, fertilizer and ammonia.

By December, a second berth will have entered operation, followed by the other two next year.

Storage capacity is also being expanded with four new warehouses: two for grain (each capable of storing 80,000 tonnes, and one for sugar, with 114,000 tonnes capacity. The fourth will be able to handle either cargo. BC