DP World Vancouver, the Canadian unit of Dubai-based DP World, has signed a three-year agreement to operate cargo terminals for the Nanaimo Port Authority, Canada.
According tothe agreement, DP World Vancouver will have the right to operate the Port of Nanaimo’s facilities, including the general cargo Duke Point facility and Assembly Wharf.
DP World Americas senior vice-president and managing director Matthew Leech said, "We have extensive global experience and expertise that we will apply at the Port of Nanaimo to help customers expand their businesses efficiently, contributing to the growth of the local economy in Vancouver and Canada as a whole."
The three berths at the Port of Nanaimo currently handle traditional forest products along with salt and kaolin.
The facility also handles cruise ship passengers at a newly constructed cruise berth opened in 2011.
Nanaimo Port Authority and DP World are looking to diversify the activities at the port by handling commodities along with short sea shipping of containers to and from Vancouver Island.
Nanaimo Port Authority president Bernie Dumas said, "The port wants to import and export a greater variety of commodities and our agreement with DP World, thanks to its extensive experience in both container and commodity handling, allows us to explore new business opportunities and to reduce our reliance on a single market."
Highly populated Vancouver Island is a non-road connected island without any lo-lo (lift-on, lift-off) container terminal facilities, instead relying on inefficient ro-ro services.
The short sea shipping project will ensure greater connectivity for trade to and from Vancouver Island, the company said.
In 2010, the port operator handled nearly 50Mteu across its portfolio from the Americas to Asia and, with a pipeline of expansion and development projects in India, China and the Middle East, the company expects to raise capacity to around 100Mteu by 2020.