February 12 - Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics (WWL) has opened a new branch office in Barcelona to support its growing customer business in Spain.

WWL has been operating in Barcelona since 1987 through its agent Agencia Maritima Espanola Evge (Evge), as well as through an inland transportation company providing trucking and other inland transport services.

The new Iberia branch will be headed up by Ramon Oliete - previously head of the WWL operations at Evge - and eight additional staff members from Evge have transferred into the new branch.

"Spain and Portugal have been suffering from the economic downturn in Europe over the past few years. However, a more recent trend is that auto and equipment companies have relocated production to Spain, resulting in increased export and demand for logistics services," said Erik Noeklebye, head of region Europe at WWL.

"When a market grows to this extent we ramp us our services to support our customers' logistics needs both on the ocean and on land," he added.

Evge will remain WWL's husbandry agent for Spain, as well as continuing as the company's agent in Greece and Turkey.