Awarding of the Gold-Headed Cane at the Port of Montreal - 2010 UPTURN IN TRAFFICS CONFIRMED

MONTREAL, Jan. 4 /CNW Telbec/ - The President and Chief Executive Officer of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), Ms. Sylvie Vachon, today officially inaugurated the start of a new year of activities at the Port of Montreal by awarding the Gold-Headed Cane to Captain Vikram Manchanda of India, Master of the M.V. Power, the first ocean-going vessel to enter the Port of Montreal without a stopover in 2011. The M.V. Power left the Port of Lisbon, in Portugal, on December 23. Her arrival highlights the fact that the Port is open year round to all transoceanic vessels.

This awarding ceremony of the 172nd Gold-Headed Cane brought together many representatives of the marine industry and the Montreal business community. The event also allowed the MPA to salute the work of the pilots from the Corporation du Saint-Laurent Central and the Port of Montreal, Messrs. Hébert and Vigneault, who brought the ship safely in to port.

Flying the Bermuda flag, the M. V. Power, measures 222 metres long. Operated by the Hapag-Lloyd shipping line, this container ship was launched in 1982. It is docked at Cast Terminal, which is operated by Montreal Gateway Terminals Partnership, and will set sail in the coming hours for the Port of Algeciras, in Spain.

2010: Port traffics confirm economic recovery.

For the Port of Montreal, 2010 was marked by an upturn in traffics. "According to our preliminary data for 2010 as a whole, container traffic, which accounts for more than half of the volumes handled at the Port, should post a 6.2% increase in terms of volume, and 6.1% in terms of the number of TEU containers handled, bringing us very close to the volumes achieved in 2007," stated Ms. Vachon. Liquid bulk traffic should reach the 2008 level, and dry bulk traffic is approaching the 2007 level.

All traffic combined, the year-end results for 2010 should be up by just over 4%.

The President and CEO concluded by pointing out that 2011 will see the upcoming implementation of major projects carried out at the Port in 2010, such as the new common entry portal for trucks at the east end of the Port road, the increase in capacity of the Port's electrical network, and the pier extension at Cast Terminal that will enable two 270-metre long ships to dock at the same time, as is already possible at the two other international container terminals.

About the Montreal Port Authority

Operated by the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), the Port of Montreal is a major diversified transshipment centre that handles all types of goods - non-containerized cargo, liquid bulk and dry bulk. It is a leading container port served by the largest container shipping lines in the world.

The Port of Montreal owns its own rail network, operated directly on the piers. It is connected to the two nationwide railways and the highway system. The Port also operates its own grain terminal and a marine passenger terminal that welcomed more than 48,000 passengers and crew members in 2010. All the other terminals are operated by private stevedoring firms. Port activity supports 18,200 jobs and generates $1.5 billion in economic spin-offs per year.


For further information:

Note to the heads of photo divisions:

A colour photo of the Gold-Headed Cane awarding ceremony will be available on CNW.


Jean-Paul Lejeune
Director of Communications
Tel.: 514-283-7050
Fax: 514-283-0829

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