The Darwin Port Corporation (DPC) is in the process of spending in excess of $70 million of investment capital to improve facilities at Australia’s Northern Gateway port.
The Northern Territory (NT) Government has committed $68.5 million to a capital infrastructure program to be carried out in 2008/09, and the Australian Federal Government has injected a further $3.2 million to fund an all-tides access dredging study and a technical and financial feasibility study to assess the implications of using vessels larger than Panamax class to increase bulk export capacity.
According to the DPC, part of the infrastructure program involves the development of the East Arm Wharf Facilities Masterplan 2030, which will result in a long-term Port Masterplan and a staged Port Development Plan for East Arm Wharf.
DPC Chief Executive Officer Robert Ritchie has made it clear that the global credit crisis and a temporary downturn in Australia’s financial and trade sectors will have no effect on the Corporation’s development plans, which are progressing on schedule.
The recent signing of heads of agreements with two new prospective customers, in relation to the export of iron ore through the Port of Darwin, has also boosted Ritchie’s confidence.
To support increases in bulk trade the Port of Darwin Corporation recently implemented some major infrastructure upgrades including a 1,500 tph rail dump, a 1,500 tph road dump, and a bulk ship loading facility with a capacity of up to 2000 tph with capacity in excess of 2.5 million tonnes annually.
A full report on the upgrades will be featured in Australian Mining’s May infrastructure feature.