MONTREAL, May 31, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - In 2011, the total volume of cargo handled at the Port of Montreal reached 28.5 million tonnes, well past the record of 27.9 million tonnes set in 2008. Announced at the Annual General Meeting of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), this result is a 10.1% increase over 2010. By the end of 2011, net income had risen to $7.1 million, thanks in part to stringent control over expenses.
The Port of Montreal handles containers, liquid bulk, dry bulk and grain, and accommodates cruise lines. In 2011, activity in the container sector increased 3.6% over 2010, reaching 12.5 million tonnes of cargo, or 1.36 million TEUs (20-foot equivalent unit) containers.
Turning to liquid bulk, last year the Port handled 10.1 million tonnes, up 34% over 2010. Higher receipts of refined products carried by vessels explain this upswing. Other liquid bulk products rose 9.1% compared to last year, mainly because of an increased demand for ethanol.
For its part, the volume of dry bulk handled rose 7.1%, largely due to more loads of gypsum, fertilizer, coal and iron ore. This increase does not include grain traffic, which underwent a transition year with the July 1 transfer of the Grain Terminal's operations to the agri-business Viterra.
Also, the 2011 season wrapped up with 40 international and river cruises for a total of 38,031 passengers. The Montreal Cruise Committee launched in June 2011 now has nine partners from the Montreal tourist industry actively promoting Montreal as a stopover with travel professionals. The initial results are promising: this year 55,000 passengers are expected, a 46% increase in the number of passengers. The MPA thanks all the partners on the Montreal Cruise Committee for the great work achieved.
Grain Terminal - On July 1, 2011, the Port of Montreal transferred the Grain Terminal to the agri-business Viterra, which assumes the management of its operation since then. This long-term agreement is another step toward further consolidating and increasing grain traffic to the Port while continuing to provide high calibre service to Quebec producers. "With the arrival of Vittera, all our facilities are now operated by companies that are experts in their field," stated Sylvie Vachon, President and Chief executive Officer of the Montreal Port Authority. "The Port of Montreal can now focus on its niche of excellence: global maritime commerce."
Port City - In her speech, Sylvie Vachon explained the value to the Port of Montreal of the Port City project, an initiative of the City of Montreal to develop East Montreal. Strengthening ties with the Montreal community is a priority for the MPA.
Ms. Vachon also expressed how encouraged she is by the efforts of the interim committee she chaired, which was set up to study the possibility of creating a logistics and transportation cluster for Metropolitan Montreal area. "I have good hope that every level of government called upon will soon confirm their financial participation," she stated.
Further to the sustainable development policy adopted in 2010, the Port of Montreal welcomed its first GenSet locomotive, which makes it possible to reduce fuel consumption by 54% and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 90%. Three other GenSet locomotives will be delivered this August. As for the new truck entry portal, inaugurated in March 2011, truck waiting time has been cut in half and as result, so have GHG emissions. Furthermore, in May 2011, the portal received the Award of Excellence in Transportation from the Association québécoise du transport et des routes. In addition, the Port of Montreal earned the highest performance rating in the Environmental Leadership category awarded by Green Marine, a voluntary environmental program for the maritime industry in Canada and the U.S. of which the Port of Montreal is a founding member.
About the Port of Montreal
Operated by the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), the Port of Montreal is a major diversified transshipment centre that handles all types of goods - containerized and non-containerized cargo, liquid bulk and dry bulk. A leading container port on the Atlantic, it is served by seven of the ten largest container shipping lines in the world. Strategically located in North America's heartland, it provides first class access to the markets of Quebec, Ontario and the U.S. Northeast and Midwest. The Port of Montreal handled 1,362,975 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units) containers in 2011, representing 12,471,002 tonnes of cargo. The Port also handled 10,760,649 tonnes of liquid bulk products, 3,431,811 tonnes of dry bulk products and 1,741,035 tonnes of grain in 2011. The Port of Montreal owns its own rail network, operated directly on the piers. It is connected to both national railway networks and a highway network. The Port also operates a passenger terminal that welcomed 38,031 passengers and crew members in 2011. All other terminals are managed by private stevedoring companies. Port activity supports 18,200 jobs and generates $1.5 billion in economic spin-offs per year.
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