Maersk Line introduces direct service to Cuba
Maersk Line marked the introduction of its first direct service from Northern Europe to Cuba on Friday 22 April when a 2556 TEU container vessel arrived in the Port of Mariel, located 50 km from the country’s capital, Havana.
The Cuba call is part of Maersk Line’s CRX – Southbound service from Northern Europe to Manzanillo, Panama, providing customers the fastest transit times in the market from North European ports in Germany (Bremerhaven), United Kingdom (Tilbury), Netherlands (Rotterdam) and Ireland (Cork). A weekly feeder service further connects to Santiago in the Southeastern area of Cuba.
“The launch of our first direct standalone service between Cuba and Northern Europe marks our dedication to helping our customers reach new markets, while continuing to enable trade and economic development. We are very pleased with this development which also reflects our commitment to the trade,” says Omar Shamsie, President of Latin America and the Caribbean.
In recent years, the containerised market in Cuba has grown at a pace of 10-15% per annum. Drivers have been infrastructure investments and modernisation projects, such as the creation of the Special Economic Zone of Mariel and the refurbishing of the old Havana Port for Cruises.
In addition, the country has undergone a series of structural economic changes that have had a positive impact on its development by allowing 100% private investments in certain industries and not least the resumed diplomatic relations with the US.
Earlier this month, Maersk also launched a new service that connects Dublin and Liverpool with the Mediterranean and North Africa.