Unifeeder, which this week announced the imminent takeover of the Mediterranean common feeder operator UFS, is to launch a new service from the Gibraltar Straits hub of Algeciras to ports in Italy and Malta.
The weekly loop will turn in 14 days with two ships and it will serve the following ports: Algeciras, Vado Ligure, Livorno, Naples, Salerno, Marsaxlokk, Algeciras.
Unifeeder has chartered the 1,732 teu GLUECKSBURG and the 1,716 teu SAMARIA for deployment on the new service. Given the recent takeover of UFS, it remains to be seen if the new offer is to be marketed under the house flag of Unifeeder or UFS.
The new service will mainly be supported by volumes from Maersk Line, which will close its own weekly service on the route and opt for slots on the new loop instead. The new Unifeeder/UFS offer is intended as a direct successor and will call the exact same ports as the present Maersk service.
Maersk presenty deploys the 1,732 teu EM SPETES and the 1,373 teu MAERSK TANGIER, which are to phase out on the 4 and 11 of October, respectively. The Danish carrier is expected to return the former ship to Eurobulk / Pitteas at the end of a time charter and return the latter ship to Technomar at the end of a sale-and-charter back. At 23 years of age, the MAERSK TANGIER appears to be a candidate for recycling.