Crowds of people gathered at Salisbury Wharf on Tuesday 4th October to witness the Aotea Maersk arrive at the Port of Tauranga. Members of the media, industry professionals, shipping and government officials were on hand to witness the occasion including our very own Murray Gain who filmed the following footage.
Measuring some 347 metres long and 43 metres wide, the 9,640TEU Aotera Maersk is the largest container ship to ever berth in New Zealand. Its arrival marks the beginning of a new era in international trade for the country, following a $350 million upgrade of the port, its facilities and the deepening and widening of harbour channels.
Officially welcomed by Transport Minister, the Hon Simon Bridges, the Aotera Maersk will operate between the west coast of South America, New Zealand and Asia.
"The Aotea Maersk can carry almost twice as much cargo as any other container ship that has previously docked in New Zealand, allowing us to become a more efficient export nation," Mr Bridges said.
"Such large ships are a potential game changer for New Zealand businesses looking to export, allowing us to compete with countries that have big ships on their main trade routes."