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PM Lee unveils S$3.5 billion Pasir Panjang Terminal expansion

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A S$3.5 billion project to add 15 mega berths to the Pasir Panjang container terminal was officially opened on Tuesday by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

A S$3.5 billion project to add 15 mega berths to the Pasir Panjang container terminal was officially opened on Tuesday by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

The new berths are part of Pasir Panjang Terminal Phases 3 and 4 and will each be able to handle up to one million containers or twenty-foot equivalent Units (TEUs) a year.

Noting that the success of Singapore's port was "critical" to the country, Mr Lee said in a speech at the opening ceremony that the new berths would allow the port to better serve mega container ships and boost its efficiency.

He added that the government was looking at how the upcoming Tuas port could be designed to better integrate with its surroundings so that it can be open to the public - rather than be out of bounds, as is the tradition.

The new berths in Phases 3 and 4 are specifically designed to serve huge container ships that shipping lines are increasingly deploying, port operator PSA said in a press release.

PSA added that when the expansion of Pasir Panjang Terminal is fully operational by the end of 2017, Singapore will be able to handle a total of 50 million TEUs annually.

The future Tuas port will be designed to handle up to 65 million TEUs a year.

Fock Siew Wah, group chairman of PSA International, noted in a statement on Wednesday that the official opening of Pasir Panjang Terminal Phases 3 and 4 coincides with the anniversary of the arrival of the first container vessel to Singapore, the MV Nihon, back in 1972.