NIDEC ASI awarded €12m contract for electrification of berths in the Port of Malta

14 April 2021

Nidec ASI (part of Nidec Group) has signed a €12m contract with the Maltese company Excel Sis for the creation of a “shore-to-ship” project for the port of La Valletta (Malta).

The project will make it possible for cruise ships moored at the four berths to draw from the island’s energy grid the power they require to be fully operative, without having to keep their diesel engines running.  

“This project represents a new objective in our strategy to promote sustainable development and reduce environmental impact in transport and logistics, towards an all-electric future,” said Dominique Llonch, CEO, Nidec ASI and chairman, Nidec Industrial Solutions.  

“Thanks to our expertise in the areas of automation and battery storage systems, we are able to electrify the entire port, from cranes to internal transport by using charging stations installed in microgrids within the port area. Times such as these are ideal for promoting infrastructural transformation which is also made easier by lower traffic levels. Our hope is that the example of Malta—and that of other earlier ports such as Genoa Pra’—will be followed by others in Italy and Europe to comply with EU norms and to make the best use of the funds allocated in the Recovery Plan to, finally, act from a sustainable and green standpoint.” 

The contract will reduce the emissions of pollutant gases by over 40 tons a year, the equivalent of continuous circulation of over 4 million vehicles and will contribute to creating the basis for a more eco-friendly and innovative relaunching of tourism, a key sector in the Maltese economy. 

The project complies with the European Union directives which encourage ports to adopt berth electrification systems (shore-to-ship) to reduce polluting emissions of vessels in the port, while maintaining active heating and air conditioning, as well as vessel auxiliary systems.  

By 2025, this recommendation will become binding for all European ports and has also been included in the EU Recovery Plan, which places reducing environmental impact among the priorities in relaunching European countries. Within this context, Malta and its main port of La Valletta provide an example for all European and other ports to follow. 

Nidec ASI is currently completing the electrification of berths in Genoa’s Port of Pra’, after also having installed its systems in the ports of Leghorn, the Muggiano (La Spezia) shipyards, EDISON–Navalimpianti – FSO Alba Marina.  

The company was one of the first players in the world to promote berth electrification, that provides for a significant reduction in the impact of port activities on the environment and on people to promote a drastic reduction in the emission of pollutant gases from berthed vessels. 

Specifically, Nidec ASI was awarded the supply of power and high-tech systems and all related engineering to connect the vessels with the power grid, including transformers, converters and cable management system.  

“This new project, together with other shore-to-ship systems implemented in Italy and France and other major initiatives such as the supply of storage battery systems for onboard energy for full-electric and hybrid cargo ships, ferries and yachts, and solutions for automating cranes used in ports, make Nidec ASI a leader in the evolution of the maritime and port sector towards all-electric, so key to navigation and logistics that are increasingly green and sustainable,” added Llonch.