Consultants unveil design plans for ports in Albania and Kosovo

29 July 2022 2 min. read

Engineering consultancy Royal HaskoningDHV has unveiled its plans for two new ports in Eastern Europe. The plans include the conventional port of Porto Romano, Albania, and a dry port in Pristina, Kosovo.

When Albania’s government announced its intention to improve the seaport of Durrës, it soon entered into a discussion with experts from Royal HaskoningDHV about how this could best be achieved. Initial dialogue saw the idea arise that this could be an opportunity to relocate the industrial activities of the port.

Shifting the industrial activities in the Albanian city of Durrës to a new location in Porto Romano – a Kosovan town nine kilometres down the coast, where industrial activities are already taking place – could come with numerous advantages. According to experts at Royal HaskoningDHV, the move could increase the efficiency of logistics chains, leading to cost savings and a more competitive Albanian economy as a result.

A design for the new port in Porto Romano

Now, Royal HaskoningDHV has revealed its proposals for the project to the governments of Albania and Kosovo. The blueprints, produced in collaboration with local partner Abkons, reveal an ambitious transformation of maritime infrastructure and multi-modal transport in the region – something which has please authorities in both countries.

“I was delighted to see the plans for the new port in Porto Romano: this is a fantastic opportunity,” remarked Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama.

Improved coastline

The new seaport of Porto Romano will use the latest in green ports and automation technologies and will be interconnected with the rail network as well as road infrastructure. This will enable the seaport to be thoroughly linked to a ‘dry port’ currently being developed in Pristina, Kosovo.

A dry port is an inland terminal that can be reached from a seaport by truck, train and sometimes by boat. In particular, a dry port functions as a shipment centre for sea freight with domestic destinations. Investments in Porto Romano and Pristina, and their potential for collaboration, is therefore hoped to enable both countries to play an important role in the transport sector in the Balkans.

With industrial activities farmed out from the port of Durrës, meanwhile, the city should have more room for the natural world – bringing with it notable sustainability boosts. Erik Oostwegel, who has held the role of CEO at Royal HaskoningDHV since 2013, noted that “the plans will ensure the country’s beautiful coastline is restored”, making the areas “more attractive for tourist activities.”

The details of the project will be further elaborated in the coming period, after which point construction will start. Porto Romano is scheduled to be commissioned in 2025, and it is estimated the project could take around €2 billion to complete that aspect of the project alone. The price tag of the dry port in Pristina is unknown at the time of writing.

“I look forward to the next phase of the development,” said Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama.