These ships load into Europe for Boston, Philadelphia, Charleston, Freeport (Bahamas), Rodman and Guayaquil. On their way back to Europe there are calls in Puerto Bolivar, Guayaquil, Paita and Cristobal.

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Until now, the ships sailed directly from Cristobal to Rotterdam, but after Cristobal, the ships will also serve Moín on a weekly basis, with Antwerp being the first European unloading port, before Rotterdam and Bremerhaven. The transit time between Moín and the Scheldt port is twelve days.

MSC's Ecuador service focuses on the transport of fruit in containers with panamax ships that have up to 1,300 connections for reefers on board. The focus on reefer cargo is now further enhanced as Costa Rica is the world's largest exporter of pineapples and also the third largest exporter of bananas.

Commenting on this development, Annemie Peeters, Key Account Manager  Shipping Lines at Port of Antwerp, explained that the ambition is for Antwerp to become the preferred perishables port in Europe.

Together with the Antwerp port community, we invest in additional capacity, technology and stimulate cooperation. We work closely with the logistic service providers and the Customs and the Federal Food Agency to tackle cold chain challenges. Our key objective? Guaranteeing operational excellence for each perishable client