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Irish shipping and port activity rose by 3% in the third quarter of 2013 when compared to the corresponding period of 2012, according to the latest quarterly iShip Index and quarterly traffic review published today by the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO). The iShip index recorded 832 points for the third quarter (3rd Quarter 2012: 810) and increased by 6% over the first 9 months of 2013. The latest analysis also indicates that three of the five principal domestic freight segments grew in the third quarter of 2013.

The largest share of growth in the third quarter was driven by the Ro-ro sector, growing by 8% to 224,954 freight trailers. The majority of roll-on/roll-off traffic moves between Ireland and Great Britain, our largest trading partner. This trade grew by 7% as trade conditions in the UK continued to improve. The increase in this sector was further helped by a stronger performance in direct continental volumes (up 14%).

Container traffic (lift on/lift off) declined by 2% to 149,423 units. The container market continued to struggle during the third quarter as sluggish demand in advanced economies constrained growth. This sector is a key distribution channel for Irish trade to Europe and to long-haul markets, including Asia and US. Exports, as a subset of the total container volume, declined by 3% while imports declined by 1%.

Dry bulk shipments, which make up the largest volume of traffic throughput at Irish ports, was flat during the third quarter of 2013. Liquid Bulk showed a 4% increase while break bulk increased by 44% due mainly to increased demand for construction related materials such as wood, and specialised machinery, however volumes remain at historically low levels.

Commodity exports such as dairy products, waste paper and iron & steel grew in the third quarter while imports of road vehicles, wood and beverages also increased.

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#Shipping - Shipping routes south of the Equator could be threatened by a giant iceberg the size of New York's Manhattan Island that's broken off a glacier in Antarctica.

BBC News reports that a British research team has been tasked with tracking the massive ice floe, which broke free from the Pine Island Glacier in July and is now drifting in the Southern Ocean between New Zealand and Chile.

A previous iceberg in the same area drifted into the Drake Passage between Cape Horn and the South Shetland Islands, and if the new discovery took the same trajectory it could pose a serious threat to international shipping lanes.

BBC News has much more on the story HERE.

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#newships – Arklow Marine Services, the shipbuilding yard owned and managed by the Tyrrell family, is celebrating the successful completion of a €2.3m order with the launch of a vessel for use in the development of UK offshore wind farms. The Gardian 18, is the third such vessel which the Arklow business has delivered to Alicat a subsidiary of UK offshore wind specialists Gardline , in the last three years.

The Gardian 18 can carry 12 personnel & 2 crew and is fitted with twin MAN main engines each developing 1000 BHP and is coupled to Rolls Royce water jets that will give the vessel a sprint speed of 30 knots and a service speed 25 knots. Gardian 18 has a range of 800 nautical miles.

Arklow Marine Services carries on the proud tradition of shipbuilding in Arklow having commenced trading in 1864 and celebrates 150 years in existence next year in 2014. The Tyrrell name remains synonymous with shipbuilding in Arklow and today the company is led by Directors Billy – Naval Architect & John – Marine Engineer. The company currently employs 30 local people and supports employment with other contractors in the region.

The Gardian 18 was built on-schedule and on-budget over a 30 week period. Among the skills involved in the construction were design and draftsmanship, machining, aluminium fabrication, welding, hydraulic engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering pipe fitting, engine alignment, plumbing, glazing, carpentry, painting, sign writing and cranage. The management of the company would like to acknowledge and thank their excellent workforce whose expertise and strong work ethic which allows them to deliver quality vessels on time every time.

Arklow Marine Services Director Billy Tyrell spoke of the potential for the company to benefit from the development of renewables on both sides of the Irish Sea;

"Over the last number of years Arklow Marine Services has developed a reputation for delivering high performance vessels for the renewable industry. Offshore wind is a rapidly growing sector in the UK and we are well positioned to take advantage of that market. Hopefully, we will see similar development in Irish offshore projects. This can deliver jobs for coastal towns like Arklow and businesses like Arklow Marine Services. We are delighted to continue our partnership with Gardline and look forward to working more closely with them as their business grows."

The United Kingdom is in the process of developing 33 GW of offshore wind energy over the next decade. That is an amount seven times the total electricity demand in Ireland. There is a further 2.5 GW of offshore wind in development on the Irish Side of the Irish Sea. The National Offshore Wind Association has estimated that a supply chain of up to €60bn exists in the Irish Sea Zone.

Brian Britton of the National Offshore Wind Association welcomed this latest contract win for Arklow Marine Services;

Arklow Marine Services is an example of how quality Irish companies can compete for supply chain opportunities that offshore wind development presents. They have already won a significant position in the UK market. We believe that with the development of Irish projects, companies like Arklow Marine Services will generate a significant employment boost for the Irish economy.

Gardline specialise in supporting the deployment, operation and maintenance of offshore wind farms. The Gardian 18 will enter service in late November. This vessel will principally be used to deliver service personnel to the offshore wind farms. The nature and design of offshore turbines necessitates vessels of high specification and unique design suitable for servicing them.

Gardline Managing Director, Steve Thacker explained the reason for partnering with Arklow Marine;
We are delighted to partner once more with Arklow Marine Services for the development of another bespoke vessel for our fleet. We operate in the toughest of conditions. Our customers demand reliability from us and we require vessels which deliver that and which meet the highest standards of safety. The Gardian 18 is the latest in a series of vessels from Arklow for Alicat and is currently for sale, which is an advantage of not having to fund the vessel whilst under construction and is ready to go straight to work

Published in Ports & Shipping

#shipping – Irish shipping and port activity rose up 11% in the second quarter of 2013 when compared to the corresponding period of 2012, according to the latest quarterly iShip Index and quarterly traffic review published today by the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO). The iShip index was at 880 points equalling its highest level since 2008. The latest analysis also indicates that four of the five principal domestic freight segments grew in the second quarter of 2013.

A large share of the growth in the last quarter has been driven by demand in the dry bulk sector which has been the strongest performing freight segment over the last three quarters, growing by 26% to 4.08 million tonnes in Quarter 2. Dry bulk shipments, typically grain, agricultural products and aggregates, make up the largest volume weighting of the iShip Index. Dry bulk commodities, such as coal, animal feed and fertilizers, all showed increased volume imports at Irish ports during the second quarter.

Roll on/roll off trailer volumes increased by 8% to 229,772 units. The majority of roll on/roll off traffic moves between Ireland and Great Britain, our largest trading partner. This trade grew by 6% as demand conditions in the UK improved. The latest economic data for the UK shows signs of a recovery which has translated into improved freight market conditions over the summer months. The rise in this sector was also helped by a stronger performance in direct continental volumes (up 26%) which were also boosted by additional vessel capacity on some of the direct continental routes earlier this year.

Container traffic (lift on/lift off) fell by 1% to 147,203 units. This sector is a key distribution channel for Irish exports and imports to long-haul markets, including Asia and the US, as well as Europe. Exports, as a subset of the total container volume, were flat as global economic conditions continued to impinge on demand. Nevertheless, strong volumes were reported in the export of meat and dairy products.

Elsewhere, imports of petroleum based commodities in tanker vessels for use in the domestic market increased by 4% to 2.58 million tonnes. Break bulk, which is largely weighted towards imports of construction related commodities, increased by 7%.

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#DublinPort - Billionaire businessman Denis O'Brien is behind an ambitious plan to make Dublin Port an international shipping services hub for the maritime industry, as The Irish Times reports.

The scheme has been presented to Dublin City Council as part of its call for submission on rezoning land in Dublin's Docklands area, already home to the Irish Financial Services Centre (IFSC).

It appears that the plan put forward by a company called ISSC Dublin - of which O'Brien is understood to be a financial backer - aims to do for shipping what the IFSC did for the international finance sector.

The Irish Maritime Development Organisation (IMDO) and IDA Ireland are also said to be involved in the ambitious project, which has the potential to create thousands of jobs.

The Irish Times has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Dublin Port

Irish shipping and port activity rose by 2% in the first quarter of 2013 when compared to the corresponding period of 2012, according to the latest quarterly iShip Index published today by the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO). The upturn in volumes is as a result of unprecedented levels of imported animal feed which otherwise masked a continued downturn in key container traffic through Irish Ports. The latest analysis indicates that two of the five principal freight segments grew in the first quarter of 2013.

The dry bulk sector has been the strongest performing freight segment over the last quarter, growing by 10% to 4.2 million tonnes. Dry bulk shipments, typically grain, agricultural products and aggregates, make up the largest volume weighting of the iShip Index. Irish ports have seen record levels of animal feed passing through their quays in recent months as farmers struggle with unseasonably poor weather conditions. Animal feed imports increased by 80% compared to the same quarter last year, continuing the double-digit surge in demand for these commodities since last July. We also noted a 13% increase in coal shipments during Quarter 1 that we again attribute to poor prevailing weather conditions.

Container traffic (lift on/lift off) fell by 6% to 140,681 units, reaching its lowest level for over a decade. This sector is a key distribution channel for Irish exports to long-haul markets, including Asia and the US, as well as Europe. Exports, as a subset of this total volume fell by 8%, the largest quarterly fall since Q3 2009, representing four consecutive quarterly declines in container export volumes. This is primarily due to weaker conditions in key global markets coupled with slower growth across the Eurozone impacting on demand. Our data initially identified a slowdown in export growth starting to emerge in Q3 2011. Imports of container based commodities into Ireland also fell by 5% in the 1st quarter as weaker industrial and consumer sentiment appeared to prevail. This is the 21st consecutive quarterly decline in import traffic with little indication of any immediate recovery during 2013.

Roll on/roll off trailer volumes increased by 1% to 204,708 units. The rise in this sector was helped by a stronger performance in direct continental services (up 19%). Traffic to and from Great Britain, our largest trading partner, fell 2% as demand conditions in the UK remained largely subdued. The latest economic data for the UK, however, suggests some signs of a recovery which may translate into improved market conditions over the latter half of the year.

Elsewhere imports of petroleum based commodities in tanker vessels, declined by 1% to 2.53 million tonnes. Break bulk, which is largely weighted towards imports of construction related commodities, showed no signs of improvement.

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#GalwayHarbour - Plans for the expansion of Galway Harbour are "99 per cent ready to go", as the Galway Independent reports.

Eamon Bradshaw, CEO of the Galway Harbour Company, said that the application for the new development would be submitted by the end of June.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the scheme will be the first Irish project lodged under new legislation that provides for planning permission on the grounds of "overriding public interest".

Bradshaw says that the necessary Natura Impact Statement has been completed, and economic and financial details were now being finalised for the redevelopment project at the harbour, recently recognised by the Government as a 'port of regional significance'.

Should it get the go-ahead from An Bord Pleanála, the new harbour will extend almost 1km out to sea with 660m of quay berth and plenty of space for cargo and container ships, oil tankers, fishing vessels and passenger ships.

The project will be completed in four phases, with the first €50 million phase extending the port by some 57 acres to accommodate a greater number of commercial ships and modern cruise liners.

Galway City Council recently granted extra time to the Galway Harbour Company for pre-expansion demolition works in the docks area.

The Galway Independent has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Galway Harbour

#MarineNotice - Marine Notice No 17 of 2013 from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on two minor amendments to ship security plans and on-board retention of security records, in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 725/2004 and the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS Code).

Firstly, and with immediate effect, there is no requirement to inform the Marine Survey Office of minor amendments to ship security plans.

Such minor amendments include amendments to contact details of shipping company personnel, and may also include other minor adjustments to the text. Minor amendments are such that the structure, scope and implementing measures contained in the plan are not amended.

If in any doubt the company security officer should contact the Marine Survey Office for further guidance. All amendments should be recorded appropriately.

Secondly, the DTTAS advises that, with immediate effect, the minimum period for the retention of security records on board (relating to drills, exercises, declarations of security, etc) is reduced to three years.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#Navigation - Marine navigation systems in yachting and shipping are 'primitive' compared to the standard in air travel, according to an electronics expert.

As Yachting Monthly reports, Martin Bransby of the UK's General Lighthouse Authorities said that "demands on marine navigation are only getting tighter, yet electronic systems at sea a primitive compared to those used in air travel. This needs to change."

Bransby made his comments following a trial to tackle the problem of rogue GPS jammers in the North Sea by the lighthouse authorities at Trinity House.

The new PNT (positioning, navigation and timing) method uses new technology to transmit critical data in the even of the loss or failure of GPS, which is vulnerable to interference from a variety of sources, both environmental and deliberate.

"The more dependent we become on electronic systems, the more resilient they must be," said Bransby. "Otherwise, we face a scenario where technology is actually reducing safety rather than enhancing it."

These new trials come after news that the Irish Coast Guard is collaborating on a new system of marine monitoring that will help detect drifting or rogue vessels in international waters before they become a problem for individual states - such as the 'ghost ship' MV Lyubov Orlova which as of last week was still adrift heading eastwards somewhere in the North Atlantic.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#ports – None of the nine state owned Irish ports are to be privatised but local authorities are to become shareholders in regional ports and private investment will be welcome too, according to the National Ports plan launched this afternoon.

Plans to radically overhaul Ireland’s commercial ports and give Government a more hands-on role in the maritime ports sector were unveiled by Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar.

The policy sees four major areas of reform and a warning that much more is expected of every port in terms of its commercial return to the state.

Up until recently a dividend has only been paid by Dublin Port but recently other Ports have begun to pay dividends too, Varadkar told reporters this afternoon.

The new National Ports Policy aims to harness the potential of every port in Ireland. Shareholders will be encouraged to take an activist approach to managing their ports to ensure the State gets best value from these crucial facilities, whether that shareholder is the Government or the local authority.

Previous policies have not recognised the huge diversity among the 19 ports that handle commercial freight. The core objective of the new National Ports Policy is to facilitate a competitive and effective market for maritime transport services.

Although ports will be key players in Ireland's future economic recovery the significance of the ports sector as part of national infrastructure is not well appreciated but this policy says Varadkar is 'a championing document for all ports'.

Ports are to be designated in different tiers. Dublin Port, Port of Cork and Shannon Foynes are Tier 1 and ports of national significance. There is also a second tier of nationally significant ports namely; Waterford and Rosslare. With 95% of everything coming into this country arriving by ship, these five ports are the life blood of trade and play a significant role in the well being of the State.

“Our commercial ports are vital to our economic recovery and to future economic growth. They are the gateways for most of our merchandise trade, and for significant numbers of tourists and passengers. This new ports policy encourages each port, large or small, to develop its full potential to ensure that each one can contribute to further growth in the ports sector,” the Minister said.

These ports are charged with leading the response to national capacity requirements, something that is long overdue because port capacity has not been matching growth in traffic for either unitised and non–unitised cargo.

The policy follows the launch of a 30–year masterplan for Dublin Port Company a year ago and the launch of the Shannon Estuary master plan last month.

Already there has been evidence of recovery in port volumes, a key indicator of economic activity. Total exports in the Irish economy last year hit their highest level ever at 16 per cent above the pre-crisis high. The Port of Cork bucked a trend last August when it announced a 5% upwards trend in traffic.

All other ports are classed as having 'regional significance' and must develop in line with local requirements. In Dun Laoghaire for example where the harbour is in the middle of the town the port expected to focus on tourism, cruise liners and marine leisure activity.

The plan to move ports into the control of the local authorities will require legislation and this may take a year and a half to complete.

Ports will have to develop dividend policies for the second quarter of this year and they must develop a port performance management system by 2015.

Changes are to be made to the board appointment process and management too.

The ports policy has been shaped with the Department of the Marine's Oceanwealth initiative and it also takes into account a new foreshore regime being developed by the Department of the Environment.

The main features of the new policy are:

·         Instead of adopting a ‘laissez faire’ approach, the Government will become a more active or activist shareholder;

·         Private investment in the ports will be encouraged;

·         Move from a ‘one size fits all’ policy to one that recognises that different ports have different roles to play, now and in the future. In recognising the different roles of each port, this policy determines which are of National Significance and have a national function, and which are of Regional Significance with a specialist significance at national level:

o   Ports of National Significance (Tier 1) are designated as: Dublin Port Company, the Port of Cork Company and Shannon Foynes Port;

o   Ports of National Significance (Tier 2) are designated as Rosslare Europort and the Port of Waterford Company;

o   Ports of Regional Significance: The remaining 14 ports account for 8% of national trade, but many have national significance in terms of specialist services or products. These include the five State companies at Drogheda, Dún Laoghaire, Galway, New Ross and Wicklow. These Ports of Regional Significance will be placed within a local authority-led governance structure with local authorities taking shareholdings in the ports.

·         Future investment in deepwater capacity, when needed, will not occur until it has been subjected to stringent analysis commissioned by the Department, and will be led by the national ports;

·         The commercial mandate of ports will remain. They will be expected to turn a profit, pay a dividend and will not receive Exchequer grants.

The new policy will allow for appropriate private-sector investment in ports. A new performance oversight system, and a new approach to capacity planning, will be developed to make sure that all ports are fulfilling their potential.

Welcoming the publication of the National Ports Policy, the Director of the Irish Maritime Development Office Glenn Murphy said: ‘The Policy provides clarity to our port companies in terms of their future direction, but importantly for the thousands of Irish and International companies that depend everyday on effective and efficient ports to connect their business with the global economy’.

Minister Varadkar added: ‘Too many governments have taken a one-size-fits-all approach to our ports sector. We want to end this laissez-faire approach, and encourage shareholders to take a much more hands-on attitude to maritime ports. This new National Ports Policy represents an important change in approach towards the Government’s management of these important assets and provides an overarching vision for the future development of the sector’.

Detailed information from Minister's Dept:

The core objective of national ports policy is to facilitate a competitive and effective market for maritime transport services. The Policy categorises the ports sector into –

· Ports of National Significance (Tier 1): Dublin Port Company, the Port of Cork Company and Shannon Foynes Port Company, each of which accounts for more than 15% of national trade;

· Ports of National Significance (Tier 2): The Port of Waterford Company and Rosslare Europort; either of which accounts for between 2% and 15% of national trade;

· Ports of Regional Significance for development principally in regional freight, leisure, aquaculture facilities, urban regeneration or cultural and recreation amenities.

The Government expects the Ports of National Significance (Tier 1) to lead the response of the State commercial ports sector to any future national port capacity requirements. There is also a role in this regard for the two Ports of National Significance (Tier 2) to develop additional capacity to aid competitive conditions within the unitised sectors (Lift On/Lift Off and Roll On/Roll Off) in particular. These five ports collectively handle approximately 92% of all tonnage handled at Irish ports in any given year.

The importance of the five other State commercial port companies is recognised by their designation as Ports of Regional Significance. These ports: Galway, Drogheda, New Ross, Wicklow and Dún Laoghaire – retain important regional roles as regional freight distribution hubs, but also increasingly important roles in areas such as marine leisure and tourism.

The policy envisages the Government as a more 'active shareholder' in those State commercial port companies designated as Ports of National Significance. This will be facilitated through:

· A realignment of central Government shareholding in those Ports of National Significance and a transfer of control of the smaller Ports of Regional Significance to local authority control;

· A requirement that relevant Ports of National Significance submit clearly stated dividend policies to the Department by the end of Q2 2013;

· The integration of existing Irish Maritime Development Office financial analysis with emerging operational benchmarking systems at a European level to allow for the development of a port performance management system by 2016;

· The introduction of on-going origin and destination surveys by 2016 to independently establish freight flows to/from the ports;

· Commissioning independent capacity forecasting analyses at regular intervals from 2018 onwards;

· Changes to the Ministerial / board level relationship to ensure that Government policy is embedded within all levels of corporate and commercial development.

This more active approach toward the management of our key international maritime gateways represents a sea change in attitude and will allow Government to benchmark the performance of our ports and the return on our investment. The future development of the Ports of Regional Significance is best placed within the framework of their regional and local communities and it is therefore proposed to allow for their transfer to relevant local authority ownership.

The National Ports Policy commits to working with the ports sector and the relevant Departments (Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and Environment, Community and Local Government) to ensure that port development and environmental protection are mutually respected.

The National Ports Policy document is available to download below.

Speech by Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar at the launch of the National Ports Policy

I am delighted to launch today a new National Ports Policy which described the Government's vision for our commercial ports sector.

Our ports are important to our economic recovery and our future economic prosperity. However, their contribution to our economy is frequently overlooked.

The Competition Authority recently estimated that approximately 84% by volume and 62% by value of all goods moved into or out of the State comes through our ports. We rely on our ports to provide us with imported oil and coal, vehicles and many consumer goods.

Many of our major export sectors, for example pharmaceuticals, chemicals and agri-food, are heavily reliant on our commercial ports. Also, ports can be important for tourism both in terms of passenger ferries, car ferries and cruise ships.

As an island nation we depend on our ports to an even greater degree than many of our trading partners. Hence the need to get the policy right.

But ports are much more than trading gateways to the world. They often have deep-rooted links into their community, are steeped in history and are centres for leisure and amenity. They are also frequently located in or beside areas of great natural beauty and importance for wildlife.

There is also a great diversity among the 14 ports that handle commercial freight each year – in terms of the size and scale of their business, the sort of ships and goods handled and the type of financial and organisational resources available to ports and governance.

Policy to date has not recognised this diversity in the role and function of our ports.

I am determined that the importance of all our ports is recognised at the highest levels of Government policy, but am also aware that the current policy is no longer appropriate.

This new policy is different in a number of ways:

· We will move from a 'one size fits all' policy to one that recognises that different ports have different roles to play, now and in the future

· Instead of adopting a 'laissez faire' approach, the government will become a more active or activist shareholder

· Future investment in deepwater capacity, when needed, will not occur until is has been subject of proven analysis led by the Department

· Local authorities will be given a greater role as shareholders in smaller ports

· Private investment in the ports will be encouraged

· The commercial mandate of ports will remain. They will be expected to turn a profit, pay a dividend and will not receive exchequer grants

Core Objective

The core objective of National Ports Policy is to facilitate a competitive and effective market for maritime transport services. In my view there are a number of different aspects to achieving this objective.

Firstly, we must be clear about which Ports are of National Significance. As detailed in the new Policy, the Government recognises Dublin Port Company, the Port of Cork Company and Shannon Foynes Port Company as our Ports of National Significance (Tier 1).

Additionally the Government also recognises the Port of Waterford Company and Rosslare Europort to be Ports of National Significance (Tier 2). National Ports Policy must be focussed on those ports which fulfil a national function.

Secondly, in relation to those ports which serve a regional or local function, we must provide an appropriate governance framework that allows for their continued future development in a manner that best suits their individual circumstances. It is also recognised that while none of these ports account for more than 8% of national trade, they can have national significance in a niche service or product area.

This new category of ports includes the five smaller State port companies in Drogheda, Dún Laoghaire, Galway, New Ross and Wicklow. These Ports of Regional Significance will be placed within a local authority led governance structure with local authorities taking shareholdings in the ports. This will require legislation, further consultation and time.

As regards Government's role as shareholder, I am firmly of the view that Government must be a more active and demanding shareholder. By that I do not mean an 'interfering' shareholder, but a shareholder that clearly outlines its vision and demands of the sector as a whole, as well as its expectation for individual ports. This will include a re-emphasis on the ports' commercial remit with a requirement that to adhere to a dividend policy and invest and develop on a sound commercial basis.

While no ports are earmarked for privatisation, private sector investment and involvement will be encouraged.

Finally, our ports enjoy a unique location and are frequently sited in - or beside - designated special protection areas for birds and habitats. This has obvious consequences in terms of the complexities involved in ensuring the appropriate balance between economic development and environmental protection. These complexities can be best resolved through early and meaningful engagement between all stakeholders in understanding the differing roles and responsibilities in these important areas.

This new National Ports Policy seeks to address each of these aspects in turn and will provide the entire sector with an appropriate policy framework to allow all our ports to develop in a sustainable manner and ensure that the State is served by the type of port infrastructure and services it requires.

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About Dublin Port 

Dublin Port Company is currently investing about €277 million on its Alexandra Basin Redevelopment (ABR), which is due to be complete by 2021. The redevelopment will improve the port's capacity for large ships by deepening and lengthening 3km of its 7km of berths. The ABR is part of a €1bn capital programme up to 2028, which will also include initial work on the Dublin Port’s MP2 Project - a major capital development project proposal for works within the existing port lands in the northeastern part of the port.

Dublin Port has also recently secured planning approval for the development of the next phase of its inland port near Dublin Airport. The latest stage of the inland port will include a site with the capacity to store more than 2,000 shipping containers and infrastructures such as an ESB substation, an office building and gantry crane.

Dublin Port Company recently submitted a planning application for a €320 million project that aims to provide significant additional capacity at the facility within the port in order to cope with increases in trade up to 2040. The scheme will see a new roll-on/roll-off jetty built to handle ferries of up to 240 metres in length, as well as the redevelopment of an oil berth into a deep-water container berth.

Dublin Port FAQ

Dublin was little more than a monastic settlement until the Norse invasion in the 8th and 9th centuries when they selected the Liffey Estuary as their point of entry to the country as it provided relatively easy access to the central plains of Ireland. Trading with England and Europe followed which required port facilities, so the development of Dublin Port is inextricably linked to the development of Dublin City, so it is fair to say the origins of the Port go back over one thousand years. As a result, the modern organisation Dublin Port has a long and remarkable history, dating back over 300 years from 1707.

The original Port of Dublin was situated upriver, a few miles from its current location near the modern Civic Offices at Wood Quay and close to Christchurch Cathedral. The Port remained close to that area until the new Custom House opened in the 1790s. In medieval times Dublin shipped cattle hides to Britain and the continent, and the returning ships carried wine, pottery and other goods.

510 acres. The modern Dublin Port is located either side of the River Liffey, out to its mouth. On the north side of the river, the central part (205 hectares or 510 acres) of the Port lies at the end of East Wall and North Wall, from Alexandra Quay.

Dublin Port Company is a State-owned commercial company responsible for operating and developing Dublin Port.

Dublin Port Company is a self-financing, and profitable private limited company wholly-owned by the State, whose business is to manage Dublin Port, Ireland's premier Port. Established as a corporate entity in 1997, Dublin Port Company is responsible for the management, control, operation and development of the Port.

Captain William Bligh (of Mutiny of the Bounty fame) was a visitor to Dublin in 1800, and his visit to the capital had a lasting effect on the Port. Bligh's study of the currents in Dublin Bay provided the basis for the construction of the North Wall. This undertaking led to the growth of Bull Island to its present size.

Yes. Dublin Port is the largest freight and passenger port in Ireland. It handles almost 50% of all trade in the Republic of Ireland.

All cargo handling activities being carried out by private sector companies operating in intensely competitive markets within the Port. Dublin Port Company provides world-class facilities, services, accommodation and lands in the harbour for ships, goods and passengers.

Eamonn O'Reilly is the Dublin Port Chief Executive.

Capt. Michael McKenna is the Dublin Port Harbour Master

In 2019, 1,949,229 people came through the Port.

In 2019, there were 158 cruise liner visits.

In 2019, 9.4 million gross tonnes of exports were handled by Dublin Port.

In 2019, there were 7,898 ship arrivals.

In 2019, there was a gross tonnage of 38.1 million.

In 2019, there were 559,506 tourist vehicles.

There were 98,897 lorries in 2019

Boats can navigate the River Liffey into Dublin by using the navigational guidelines. Find the guidelines on this page here.

VHF channel 12. Commercial vessels using Dublin Port or Dun Laoghaire Port typically have a qualified pilot or certified master with proven local knowledge on board. They "listen out" on VHF channel 12 when in Dublin Port's jurisdiction.

A Dublin Bay webcam showing the south of the Bay at Dun Laoghaire and a distant view of Dublin Port Shipping is here
Dublin Port is creating a distributed museum on its lands in Dublin City.
 A Liffey Tolka Project cycle and pedestrian way is the key to link the elements of this distributed museum together.  The distributed museum starts at the Diving Bell and, over the course of 6.3km, will give Dubliners a real sense of the City, the Port and the Bay.  For visitors, it will be a unique eye-opening stroll and vista through and alongside one of Europe’s busiest ports:  Diving Bell along Sir John Rogerson’s Quay over the Samuel Beckett Bridge, past the Scherzer Bridge and down the North Wall Quay campshire to Berth 18 - 1.2 km.   Liffey Tolka Project - Tree-lined pedestrian and cycle route between the River Liffey and the Tolka Estuary - 1.4 km with a 300-metre spur along Alexandra Road to The Pumphouse (to be completed by Q1 2021) and another 200 metres to The Flour Mill.   Tolka Estuary Greenway - Construction of Phase 1 (1.9 km) starts in December 2020 and will be completed by Spring 2022.  Phase 2 (1.3 km) will be delivered within the following five years.  The Pumphouse is a heritage zone being created as part of the Alexandra Basin Redevelopment Project.  The first phase of 1.6 acres will be completed in early 2021 and will include historical port equipment and buildings and a large open space for exhibitions and performances.  It will be expanded in a subsequent phase to incorporate the Victorian Graving Dock No. 1 which will be excavated and revealed. 
 The largest component of the distributed museum will be The Flour Mill.  This involves the redevelopment of the former Odlums Flour Mill on Alexandra Road based on a masterplan completed by Grafton Architects to provide a mix of port operational uses, a National Maritime Archive, two 300 seat performance venues, working and studio spaces for artists and exhibition spaces.   The Flour Mill will be developed in stages over the remaining twenty years of Masterplan 2040 alongside major port infrastructure projects.

Source: Dublin Port Company ©Afloat 2020. 

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