The Grand Alliance (GA) partners, NYK Line, Hapag Lloyd and OOCL have announced an upgrade regarding its Asia East Coast Express (AEX) service with the introduction of a 10th post Panamax (PPX) vessel and the addition of a direct and weekly Vietnam call at the deepwater port of Cai Mep. The first Eastbound (inbound) vessel to call Cai Mep will be the OOCL America voyage 28E01 on January 9, 2010. The first Westbound (export) vessel to call Cai Mep was the OOCL Oakland voyage 16W50 sailing from the Port of Halifax on December 16, 2009. The port rotation is scheduled as Cai Mep, Laem Chabang, Singapore, Colombo, Cagliari, Halifax, New York, Savannah, Norfolk, New York, Halifax, Cagliari, Jeddah, Colombo, Singapore and Cai Mep.
“Vietnam and Southeast Asia are and will continue to be a strategic market for the Port of Halifax . We are very pleased that we will continue as the first inbound and last outbound North American port for the AEX service,” said Karen Oldfield, President and CEO of the Halifax Port Authority. "The new (GA) service employing PPX vessels enhances the Halifax supply chain gateway with additional capacity and frequency in our position as the Canadian gateway to both the Canadian and USA Midwest heartland The Port of Halifax was recently in Vietnam on a trade mission, where we were able to visit the Port of Cai Mep.”
The Grand Alliance, formed in 1998, is the leading integrated consortium in global container shipping. The Port of Halifax has featured for over a decade as both an first inbound and outbound logistics center for AEX and the Grand Alliance PAX service connecting the Far East and North Europe and the Halifax gateway.