The Administración Portuaria Integral (API) de Tampico S.A. de C.V. was created in 1999 as the port authority responsible for the Puerto de Tampico. As one of México’s busiest and most important east coast seaports, the Puerto de Tampico is an important gateway for petrochemical and mining products, steel, wood, and many industrial goods.
In 2008, the Puerto de Tampico handled a total of 8.8 million tons of cargo carried on 398 commercial cargo and 284 petroleum vessels. Foreign cargo of 4.3 million tons included 2.0 million tons of imports and 2.3 million tons of exports. The Puerto de Tampico also handled 4.5 million meters of cabotage. Foreign trade included 11.1 thousand TEUs of containerized cargo, including 5.3 thousand TEUs of imports and 5.8 thousand TEUs of exports. The Puerto de Tampico also handled exports of 309 automobiles.
Within the total cargo handled at the Puerto de Tampico in 2008 were 5.9 million tons of petroleum and petroleum products, 1.5 million tons of general cargo, 1.3 million tons of mineral bulk, 98 thousand tons of fluids, and 61 thousand tons of containers. (Puerto de Altamira handles the majority of container cargo in the area.)
The Puerto de Tampico is México’s most up-to-date seaport, considering its infrastructure and facilities. It has large, open, modern portworks and warehouses. The railway station is easily accessible to the port and waterfront. The Puerto de Tampico has the latest and best equipment for loading today’s oil tankers.
The Puerto de Tampico is protected by two breakwaters of 1340 and 1445 meters, located 300 meters apart, with a 100-meter navigation channel of 11 meters depth. The Puerto de Tampico’s access channel is 19.6 thousand meters long, 60-100 meters wide, and from nine to 11 meters deep. The secondary ship channel at Pueblo Viejo is 2500 meters long and 60 meters wide and is three meters deep. The El Chijol secondary ship channel is 15.5 thousand meters long and 50 meters wide with a depth of three meters.
The Puerto de Tampico offers 11 berths of a total 2146 meters in length and varying depths. The Puerto de Tampico also contains 38.7 thousand square meters of warehouses, 6.5 thousand square meters of shed space, and 331.7 thousand square meters of open storage.
The Puerto de Tampico has six private terminals, two public terminals, and ten fields dedicated to constructing marine oil rigs. It is connected with over 100 countries through 20 shipping lines. Its major trade and shipping partners include the United States, Canada, Europe, Cuba, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Brazil, Singapore, and Australia.
The Puerto de Tampico contains six privately-operated terminals handling cargo. Petroleos Méxicanos (Pemex) operates the Maritime Terminal Madero to handle petroleum and petroleum products. With 10 dock positions with a total of 1910 meters long with alongside depth of 11 meters, the terminal has capacity to handle six million tons of cargo. It is equipped with rail access and a dry dock for repair of vessels to 50 thousand DWT.
Cemex México operates a bulk minerals terminal in the Puerto de Tampico. Handling mostly cement and clinker, the terminal’s dock is 500 meters long with alongside depth of 8.5 meters and two berthing positions. The terminal includes five silos with capacity to store 35 metric tons, and it covers an area of 1.5 hectares.
The private terminal Minera Autlán in the Puerto de Tampico also handles bulk minerals, primarily manganese, ferro alloys, and carbon coke. The terminal has a 160-meter dock for vessels to 6.7 meters draft and a dolphin. The dock has capacity to handle 60 thousand tons and to store 108 metric tons of cargo, and the terminal covers about 30 thousand square meters.
Grupo Peñoles operates a bulk minerals terminal in the Puerto de Tampico operated that handles cargoes like bentonite, magnesium oxide, Ilmenita, and sodium sulfate. Its dock can accommodate vessels to 240 meters long with a draft of 9.1 meters. The terminal is equipped with rail access and has two warehouses with capacity to store 19.5 metric tons of cargo.
The Puerto de Tampico’s agricultural bulk terminal is owned and operated by Proteins of Tamaulipas (PROTAMSA) to handle cargoes like soy beans, wheat, corn, cement, wood, and fertilizers. The 180-meter dock has alongside depth of 9.1 meters. With railway access, the terminal includes four silos that can store as much as 30 metric tons of cargo and a warehouse with capacity for six thousand tons.
With three silos that can store up to 30 metric tons of agricultural goods, the TEGOSA terminal at the Puerto de Tampico has a 520-meter long dock with alongside depth of 6.1 meters for handling agricultural products, particularly corn.
The Puerto de Tampico has three public terminals with specialized equipment to handle general cargo, containers, oversized cargo, and bulk mining and agricultural products. With a total of 2141 meters in 11 dock positions with alongside depths ranging from 10.7 to 11.3 meters. The public terminals at the Puerto de Tampico are served by double-railway allowing for direct loading and unloading and direct access to the nation’s highway network. The terminals include over 60 thousand square meters of roofed storage space.
Docks 1-9 are a total of 1586 meters long and handle general cargo and containers. Examples of cargoes handled at these docks include steel sheet coils, bulk minerals, wood, and trucks. At a total of 576 meters long, Docks 10 and 11 are used primarily for oversized cargoes, wood, steel products, and molasses.