June 15 - The multipurpose vessel Meri has become the first vessel to be handled at the port of Bronka, when it delivered three rubber-tyred gantry (RTG) cranes to the new Russian gateway from Konecranes in Finland.

Meri, which is operated by Finnish shipping company Meriaura, was the first commercial ship to transit the recently constructed canal that provides access to the port of Bronka.

The RTG cranes, which will be used at Bronka's new container terminal, were rolled off the vessel at the port's Berth 3 on their own wheels.

This was the first three of a total of ten cranes to be delivered to the new port. A second batch of three is expected to arrive in mid-August. The port is scheduled to begin official operations in September 2015.

The deepwater port of Bronka will comprise of two terminals - a container and ro-ro terminal - and a logistics centre. The container terminal will offer five berths along 1,176 m of quay, while the 57 ha ro-ro terminal has a quay length of 630 m, allowing the simultaneous handling of three vessels.

HLPFI reported in May 2015 that the port of Bronka, which lies just outside of St Petersburg, had become a member of the Port of Hamburg Marketing alliance.