23 August 2023 - State Secretary for Asylum and Migration Nicole De Moor today undertook a half-day internship at PSA Belgium as part of the Voka Summer Internship. The State Secretary not only visited the North Sea Terminal but also got a tour of the yard of project Emerald.
State Secretary Nicole De Moor: "I don't live far from the port myself, so it was nice to experience up close how things work here. Absolutely impressive to see these major projects underway in the port up close. The port remains important for economic growth, without companies losing sight of a sustainable future."
CEO PSA Belgium Cameron Thorpe was delighted with Nicole De Moor's visit: "We are delighted to have been able to show State Secretary Nicole De Moor around our terminal and explain to her the importance of the Emerald project. Emerald is a bold step forward in PSA's efforts to improve the port's infrastructure and optimise services to our customers. By investing in sustainable technologies and renewable energy, we are taking a clear step towards a greener and more competitive port."
Project Emerald, a project of PSA Belgium and the Port of Antwerp-Bruges, refers to the renewal of the Europa Terminal. The aim of the works is to create an efficient and sustainable terminal that can receive the most modern mega-ships and contribute to the transition to a climate-neutral port. The renovation will take place in three phases to ensure that the terminal remains operational during the works. By 2032, the terminal should be fully operational again with an impressive capacity of 2.5 million TEUs.
During the tour, the renovation of the quay wall was also discussed. The current quay wall will be demolished and replaced by a new quay wall with crane beams and all necessary piping and infrastructure for electrification and other optimisations. In addition, the quay wall will be deepened to 17.5 metres, which will allow the terminal to handle the very latest mega vessels in the future. The State Secretary was explained more about the future container storage facilities and how the terminal will look and function in the future.
Voka summer internship
Voka Zomerstage offers politicians the chance to spend a day at different companies in Flanders. The programme promotes better interaction between the political domain and the business world, with politicians gaining valuable insights into the challenges and needs of companies. Voka Summer Internship encourages constructive cooperation and well-considered policy decisions to support economic growth and innovation in Flanders.
State Secretary Nicole De Moor: "As a politician, this gives me the opportunity to spend a day in a company. That gives us an insight into challenges that exist, we can get to work on them straight away. The shortage of hands on the shop floor is a problem just about everywhere. Getting newcomers to work is at the top of my priorities; for asylum seekers, I have worked on this through a new approach in the asylum centres. They are matched to companies, and many asylum seekers in Antwerp are effectively working in the port. Everyone can do their bit, and if policies allow it, positive things happen."