Greenock, Scotland Receives its Largest Boxship as Port Expands Trade

Greenock, Scotland
MSC Magnum VII became the largest containership to call in Greenock, Scotland (Peel Ports)

Published Oct 12, 2023 3:43 PM by The Maritime Executive

The Port of Greenock, Scotland’s deepest container terminal and the primary commercial port on the west coast, has received its largest containership to date breaking a six-year-old record. It is the latest demonstration of the container carriers upscaling their fleets even into second tier ports as the newest generation of ultra large boxships are making possible a rearranging across many routes.

The MSC Mangun VII arrived at the Port of Greenock at the end of last week on October 7. She was coming from Liverpool in England and continued to Portbury near Bristol before proceeding to Le Harve, France. Earlier on the route she had called in Antwerp.

At 85,832 dwt, she is a smaller containership with a capacity of 6,750 TEU. Built in 2003, the vessel which is registered in Liberia, is 984 feet in length. She however represents an increase for the port and on the feeder route on the West Coast of Scotland. The previous record for the largest containership to call in the port was the MSC Pohorje. That vessel was 875 feet in length with a capacity of 4,045 TEU, making her first visit to Greenock in July 2017.

“Containers are a big part of our offering at the Port of Greenock, so it was really special to welcome such an impressive container vessel to our port for the first time,” said Jim McSporran, Port Director, Peel Ports Clydeport. “It’s another proud milestone for everyone at the port, and reinforces the benefits of our central location, which makes us such a popular choice for customers looking to import and export their products into the UK and across Europe.”


MSC Magnum VII arrived in Greenock on October 7 (Peel Ports)


The arrival of the larger containership is another step in the port operator’s efforts to expand trade at the port. Greenock currently handles a throughput of 100,000 TEU a year. They have recently ordered new, larger container cranes to expand the terminal’s handling capabilities. At a cost of £17 million ($20.7 million), the ship-to-shore cranes are the largest single investment made at the container terminal since it opened in 1969. 

As a regional hub, the port looks to expand its trade broadly across multiple segments. Working with the Inverclyde Council, the Scottish and UK governments, Peel Ports is also expanding operations for the Greenock Ocean Terminal and a new visitor center designed to expand the cruise trade coming to the region.

While the port proudly marked the arrival of its largest containership, it was dwarfed by the largest vessel to call at the port, the MSC Virtuosa, a 181,500 gross ton cruise ship that is 1,0861 feet in length. She made her maiden call to the port in 2021 and returned in June 2023 as part of MSC’s summer 2023 deployment. She was part of an expected 150,000 cruise passengers projected for Greenock in 2023, which would represent the largest cruise total for the port.