Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Bulk Freight Expansion as Port Group Invests in 5 million Tonne per Annum Terminal

Facility Changes Hands to Ensure Future of Steel Industry
Shipping News Feature
UK – Associated British Ports (ABP) has announced an agreement with British Steel which will see the port operator invest £65 million into the Immingham Bulk Terminal (IBT). The investment will look to help support the long-term future of steel manufacturing in the Humber region as ABP takes over the operation of the Terminal from British Steel, located on the west side of the port in Immingham. Measures are in place to preserve all jobs at the facility and it is expected that a limited number of additional jobs will be created.

All staff currently working for British Steel at IBT, approximately 45 people, will be invited to join Immingham Bulk Terminal Limited, within the ABP group. ABP’s port operatives may also work alongside existing colleagues to assist in reducing any labour shortages. This latest move adds to a continuing investment programme by ABP in the Humber ports.

The Terminal currently handles over 5.5 million tonnes of bulk cargoes such as iron ore, coal and coke each year destined for the steel manufacturer’s Scunthorpe headquarters. The project will help to strengthen the long-term future of British Steel’s manufacturing operations in the region as well as the long association of the Humber Ports in supporting the steel industry. Gerald Reichmann, British Steel’s Chief Financial Officer, said:

“We’re delighted to be working in partnership with ABP, whose expertise in running operations like IBT will enable us to focus on our core steelmaking operations. As well as investment, the agreement will give us access to additional berthing opportunities to support our current requirements and enable further growth.”

As part of its £65 million commitment to the project, ABP will invest in new cranes, equipment and infrastructure to underpin the safe and reliable operation of the site for the future use. Simon Bird, Regional Director of ABP Humber, said:

“We see this new venture as a fantastic opportunity for the Humber. Not only will people benefit from potential new job opportunities in the area, but ABP and British Steel will be working together to run a smooth operation which has scope for further expansion of steel manufacturing in the Humber region.”

Elsewhere the first phase of a £300,000 demolition project to clear a new 13-acre development site has completed at the Port of Lowestoft’s Shell Quay. The project, to provide more development land for ABP and surrounding local businesses, brings ABP’s total investment in the Port of Lowestoft to £1 million in the last quarter. This follows an announcement in October that ABP has signed a new contract with Norfolk boat builder, Goodchild Marine Services Limited, to construct a new state-of-the-art pilot boat for the port.

In addition to these two latest investments, the Port of Lowestoft has benefited from a £10 million investment by ScottishPower Renewables in a new Operations and Maintenance (O&M) facility. This is thought to be the largest private sector investment in Lowestoft since the £7 million investment in the Tower Road Retail Park.