Utaina ake a Ruakura

Cargoes on the rise through Ruakura Inland Port

19 February 2024

The Ruakura Inland Port opened for operations with two train services a week in early August 2023. Seven months on we now have daily freight train service calls at Ruakura, each transporting up to 90 containers on their journey between MetroPort Auckland and Port of Tauranga.

Containers at the Ruakura Inland Port

Currently the main cargo flows are imported goods containers from MetroPort Auckland which unload at Ruakura, re-load with New Zealand made goods and produce, and carry on to Port of Tauranga for exporting.

Dave Christie, Supply Chain Strategy Director at TGH, says this cyclical process provides extra resiliency in our trade supply chain, decarbonises our freight transport, and provides importers and exporters with more options with reduced costs.

“65% of New Zealand’s trade travels through Auckland, Tauranga, and Hamilton. We’re now seeing an increasing portion of that freight volume move between these major economic nodes through rail-based, one-way movements, that take trucks carrying empty containers off our roads. This means our local businesses spend less on freight transport and can even expand their operations with increased accessibility to our coastal ports.”

Ruakura Inland Port expects train services to increase through the first quarter of 2024 as operations at the new Maersk facility move up to full capacity. Currently the port operator (Quality Marshalling) and the empty container depot, ContainerCo, are both operating within the existing footprint of the inland port. As container volumes build on the inland port, TGH is now looking at developing a further 3ha for the empty depot provider to move and free-up space on the Inland Port.