Plan for new Limón dock going ahead despite trial

Despite the prospect of a trial, the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes says that it will continue with the process of preparing a concession for APM Terminals to build a modern cargo handling facility at Moín.

The ministry made the explanation Tuesday as it noted that a judge in the Tribunal Contencioso Administrativo did not order any delays in the process. The tribunal is designed to handle complaints against government agencies.

The ministry noted that a judge had elevated the case to a full trial but that the complaint will be handled in an expedited way.

An organization of banana growers challenged the awarding of the concession because the group said they would be paying more for loading their harvest unless they continued to use the out-dated public docks. Challenges were expected from the union representing dock workers but not from banana growers who have been plagued with wildcat strikes and blockades at the public docks.

Union officials did enter a challenge, but it has been dismissed by the Contraloría de la República. More challenges are expected.

The Dutch firm APM manages docks all over the world. It agreed to invest nearly $1 billion to construct a modern facility in three stages. The new docks are expected to cut by two-thirds the time required to load ships with pineapples, bananas and other Costa Rican exports.

The investment in the docks is considered a key element in the government’s plan to bring economic prosperity to Limón province.

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