Mokpo wants new car pier

Kia cars are being exported from Mokpo port. Credit: Shutterstock/Raisaliya

South Korea’s Mokpo port is planning to build a new pier to facilitate growing vehicle shipments. Especially transhipments of vehicles from Kia Motors have been growing and there is a need to build a new facility to reduce logistics costs.

On 15 April, Mokpo Regional Office of Oceans and Fisheries held a briefing for potential contractors to discuss the construction of a 300 m-long export car pier that can handle 50,000 tonnes of vehicles at any time. Prior to that, the office had launched the basic design of the pier, done by local port design specialist Ara Technology.

Mokpo Regional Office of Oceans and Fisheries stated that work on the pier will be carried out from 2020 to 2023, at an estimated cost of KRW43.2 billion (USD36.5 million). Construction of the second phase of the so called Mokpo New Port, where the pier is to be located, is nearly complete, with all works set to be done in 2020, after a total of 14 years of building.

Mokpo New Port has been processing vehicle exports from Kia Motors Corporation’s Gwangju plant, with 310,000 units handled in 2018, while transhipments have been increasing. Kia’s Gwangju plant produces sports utility and commercial, including buses as well as military vehicles. In the past decade, demand for such, especially SUVs, has meant that more of its output is passing through Mokpo.

Mokpo Regional Office of Oceans and Fisheries said, “As the export pier is 750 m from the transhipment pier, logistics costs are growing and there is a pressing need for another pier.”
Vehicle transhipments in Mokpo have grown, from 15,000 units in 2014 to 159,000 in 2018.

Mokpo Regional Office of Oceans and Fisheries said, “By strengthening our support for import and export activity through constructing this car dock, Mokpo port will become a central port in the southwestern region.”