The demand for offshore power cables is expected to grow in the years to come as offshore wind continues to be essential for the global transition to renewable energy. With the positive market outlook and a strong order backlog, NKT is now investing in a new specially designed barge built for cable transportation on the river Rhine to increase the transportation capacity and enhancing the security of delivery from its manufacturing site in Cologne. NKT also increases capacity in its logistical center in Rotterdam from where the offshore cables manufactured in Cologne are loaded to cable-laying vessels.
- With the investment in the purpose-built barge and in increased capacity at our logistical center in Rotterdam, we strengthen our position as a leading provider of offshore power cables. The investments are driven by a growing demand from the offshore industry and will enhance our delivery security even in times with abnormal weather conditions or with multiple projects being executed in parallel, says Executive Vice President Mika Makela, who is heading the manufacturing site in Cologne.
The barge is designed and built by Neptune Marine for the changing condition of the Rhine and can operate in very shallow water and thereby minimizing the effects of low water levels. To minimize the environmental impact, the barge is powered by green electricity during cable loading at the harbour in Cologne where the factory is also powered by electricity generated from renewable energy.
With high-voltage cable factories in both Cologne and Karlskrona, Sweden, NKT is strategically well-positioned to deliver power cables for the growing offshore wind sector in the North and the Baltic Sea as well as for the interconnector market also being driven by the transition to renewable energy across Europe.
NKT expects the barge to be fully operational in Q4 2020.