Bumper year for Wales’ leading general cargo port

Associated British Ports, owner and operator of the Port of Newport, has announced an increase of more than 20% in the amount of cargo the port handled during 2014 compared with 2013.

Supporting 3,000 local jobs and contributing £186 million per annum to the Welsh economy The Port of Newport is Wales’ leading general cargo port and handled 1.85 million tonnes of cargo last year. Significant growth was seen in the steel industry, in terms of both imports and exports, and the agriculture sector, with the handling of bulk products, such as grain, fertiliser and animal feed also increasing.

Director of ABP south Wales, Matthew Kennerley, said: “The Port of Newport is regarded as a major port within South Wales, but also in a UK-wide context as much of the cargo that comes into Newport is used to support the manufacturing, construction, and agricultural sectors around the whole of the UK.

“Part of the reason that Newport has enjoyed such growth is a result of its ability to handle deep sea vessels of up to 40,000 tonnes which makes it a crucial hub for Welsh and UK industries who want to access  lucrative and growing deep sea markets, including China, the Far East, Russia and the Americas. As the economy continues to recover we have seen increased demand for handling larger ships which are both delivering cargo to service industry in the UK, but also exporting products to overseas markets which are being produced and manufactured locally.

“We are committed to investing in the Port of Newport to help us to accommodate increasing cargo volumes and also the global trend of larger ships, both in terms of height and width. It is also essential that we continually improve efficiency to ensure that our operations, and our customers’ operations, are as competitive as possible.

“We have invested more than £10 million to improve operations and facilities at the Port of Newport in the last 18 months alone, including new warehouses, renewable energy projects, mobile plant and cranes and quay strengthening and access improvement works. We are also in the process of developing a 20-year Port Development Masterplan to help us plan our future infrastructure development.”

The Port of Newport consists of two docks: the North and South and encloses a water area of 125 acres and a land area of 685 acres. Its tenants span the steel, construction, agriculture, manufacturing and power generation sectors.