Hutchison Ports BEST has been awarded the prize for the best container terminal in Europe at the AFLAS 2021 gala (Asian Freight, Logistics & Supply Chain Awards), which was held on 21 October in Hong Kong.

The AFLAS awards, organised each year by Asia Cargo News magazine, independently recognise leading logistics service providers, including airlines, shipping lines, airports and ports. The jury is made up of more than 15,000 consulted people who nominate the leading companies and then finally choose the leader for each category. The qualification parameters are leadership, consistency in service quality, innovation, customer orientation and reliability.

The terminal’s efforts to maintain the reliability and quality of service at a particularly complex time marked by the global pandemic have been highly valued. In this respect, the efficiency and productivity of BEST, one of the highest in maritime terminals at international level, did not drop at any time, maintaining an average of over 40 movements per hour and per crane.

Guillermo Belcastro, CEO of Hutchison Ports BEST, said “we are very proud to receive this award which reaffirms the value of the service we generate each day. This encourages us to continue working with the same humility and passion as always with the aim of becoming a further competitive advantage to our customers”.

BEST has adapted to the new maritime operational needs and with new equipment (such as the latest two quay cranes that arrived last May) has managed to increase its operational capacity and service level to operate large vessels - up to 20,000 TEUs have been handled in a single call.

The terminal has not only maintained high operational levels but has also been working purposefully towards achieving its sustainability goals. Currently, each container passing through BEST represents 50% less direct CO2 emissions compared to other conventional terminals. In environmental terms, one of its most ambitious short-term goals is to continue cutting CO2 emissions in its operations and to become a benchmark in the sector. Progress has been made in the digitisation of many processes through the use of the Hutchison Ports UBI mobile app; and there has been a redoubled focus on the use of rail versus truck.

Hutchison Ports BEST, located in the Port of Barcelona, is Hutchison Ports’ first semi-automated container terminal and the most technologically advanced port development project in Spain and Southern Europe. It has excellent road and rail connections with the main road and rail network in Spain and the rest of Europe and a powerful network of maritime connections with the most important ports. The development of these routes, together with Barcelona’s privileged and strategic location, positions BEST as a logistics hub and makes it the main gateway for the entry of goods into the European market