Pilbara Ports throughput value jumps 29 per cent

Port Hedland

Port Hedland.

The Pilbara Ports Authority (PPA) has broken full-year records for the second year running, with a total throughput of 724.7 million tonnes (Mt) for the 2020-21 financial year.

This followed exceeding 700Mt for the first time last financial year and represented an increase of 14 per cent over the past five years.

PPA chief executive officer Roger Johnston said the organisation’s strong performance was a result of improved port efficiencies, which has helped to meet the strong demand for iron ore exports.

“The investment to increase the port of Port Hedland’s capacity is paying off, with the enhancements resulting in an expanded shipping window to enable more vessels to sail on high tide per year, as well as increasing the amount of product that can be safely loaded onto vessels,” Johnston said.

“Pilbara Ports Authority has contributed to Western Australia’s enviable economic position, with the value of commodities passing through our ports in 2020-21 estimated to be in excess of $155 billion – this is a 29 per cent increase compared to the previous year.

“This is a testament to the ports continuing to operate at full capacity throughout COVID-19, with Pilbara Ports Authority navigating border closures and strict maritime regulations to deliver safe and reliable operations for the benefit of the resources sector and the State of Western Australia.”

Last month PPA increased tonnage charges by 25 per cent at Port Hedland as part of the 2021-2022 state budget.

In May, the organisation delivered a total monthly throughput of 62.6Mt, which was equal to the same amount in May 2020.

Port Hedland achieved a monthly throughput of 48.4Mt, of which 48.0Mt was iron ore exports.

The Port of Dampier delivered a total throughput of 13.3Mt, a two per cent decrease from May 2020.

May imports through Port Hedland totalled 170,000 tonnes, a decrease of three per cent compared to May 2020.

Imports through the Port of Dampier totalled 109,000 tonnes, an increase of 36 per cent from May 2020.

Port Hedland is the world’s largest bulk export port and ships iron ore for major miners including Fortescue, BHP and Roy Hill.

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