Growing port side

As one of Denmark’s oldest ports, Køge Havn has existed for almost 1000 years, expanding towards the sea from its beginnings on the banks of a small river. Not only a port, the site also houses the Scandinavian Transport Centre, a large business park and transport centre. Køge Havn handles bulk cargo and roll on roll off (ro-ro) traffic, which consists of wheeled vehicles that can be driven on and off vessels as opposed to being lifted by a crane. Situated close to the capital of Copenhagen, Køge Havn is one of the largest ports in Denmark.

Thomas Elm Kampmann, director of Køge Havn, describes the port activities: “We deal with a lot of bulk cargo including timber, grain, pellets, salt, wooden pallets, building materials such as sand and cement, and waste materials like metal. We also handle a considerable number of liquids for the asphalt industry as there are two asphalt plants on the port as well.” The port also operates a ferry between Køge Havn and Bornholm, a small Danish island in the Baltics, carrying passengers and cargo.

A wide variety of companies operate from Køge Havn, turning over close to two million tonnes of goods a year. Thomas highlights some of the ports major clients: “We have two logistic brokers, and Holship, who are situated at the port. Probably the most well known company we have using the port is Stena, who are known for their ferry service. They have a metal division called Stena Metal, which is based at the port operating the import and export of waste materials. There is also Broste, one of the biggest salt importers in Denmark, for consumption and for use on the roads in the winter season.”

Currently Køge Havn is undergoing a major 100 million euro expansion incorporating both existing companies and activities, as well as new clients. Thomas elaborates on what this means for the company: “We are going to expand the port by an additional 400,000 square metres. Although the expansion won’t be finished for another five or six years, we have already leased out 70 per cent of the space, such is the demand for well-placed port areas around Copenhagen.”

He carries on to describe the ro-ro sector of the business: “At the moment it’s quite a small part of the overall business but we see the opportunity to expand the volume of ro-ro traffic into the port, particularly within the next ten years as the Russian economy picks up. We want to be prepared for the future, which is why we are planning a further expansion of 250,000 square metres dedicated to ro-ro cargo.”

Another major project in and outside of Køge Havn is the redevelopment of an old port area into an urban development. One of the biggest city developments in Denmark, the project will cover 250,000 square metres, including 100,000 square metres of old port and 150,000 square metres of land between the port and railway station incorporating flats and office buildings.

Recent years have seen the finalisation of plans for the development of a new bridge between Germany and Denmark, across the Fehrman Strait in the Baltic Sea. Thomas explains how this link will affect Køge Havn: “The fixed bridge between Germany and Denmark is to have a railway connection which will run right through the city of Køge, very close to the transport centre. This connection will open up a number of possibilities for the port in regards to efficient combined railroad traffic.”

With a number of new developments underway and others in the pipeline, Køge Havn is expecting to attract a large volume of new business and increase its goods turnover. Thomas comments: “There is discussion regarding building a railway terminal in the area, which would prove quite advantageous for us. The transport centre is also developing rapidly at the moment. Currently it occupies an area of 1.2 million square metres, which is all fully utilised. Later this year, or early next, we are looking to develop an extra 500,000 square metres for logistic companies who do not necessarily need to use the port but have to make use of the motorway system.

“The transport centre is situated in close proximity to the European motorway system, so it is an ideal location for distribution and third-party logistic companies. Of course there is a lot of synergy between the port, transport centre and hopefully the coming railway terminal.”

Any major investment brings with it challenges and the numerous developments at Køge Havn are no exception: “Our main challenge is to obtain enough space. We have clients waiting who are interested in using our facilities, both the port and transport centre, so we need to be able to develop our infrastructure at a sufficient speed for these companies,” says Thomas.

Looking to the future, Køge Havn is steaming ahead in its development plans and continuing to embrace new opportunities. Thomas concludes: “In the next ten years I would like there to be no differentiation between the port, the transport centre and the railway terminal. I would like it to be called the logistic cluster and for it to be one of the most important centres for transport and logistics in Denmark and the southern part of Scandinavia.”

Major new developments

Expanding port by 400,000 sqm

Almost 1000 year history