#portofcork – The Port of Cork Company have today announced their annual results for 2012 and despite the on-going national economic downturn; the port returned an improved performance in 2012 compared to 2011.
Total traffic in volume terms amounted to 9.05 million tonnes, against a volume of 8.8 million tonnes in 2011. Turnover amounted to €21.8 million, an increase of 1.87% and after deducting costs, the profit on ordinary activities before taxation amounted to €1.36 million.
Commenting on the 2012 annual results, Port of Cork Chief Executive, Brendan Keating said: "We are pleased to announce our 2012 results today which have returned an improved performance compared to 2011."
He continued: "Reliable accessible ports delivering prosperity is vital to the achievement of economic recovery in Ireland. We see investment in handling equipment and facilities as key to the future of our business and that of our customers and we are intent on growing our business. The Port of Cork is central to a brighter future for the Irish economy because of the value it brings in moving goods to market for both customers and businesses alike."
Throughout 2012, the company maintained its commitment to capital investment by making additions to fixed assets of up to €6 million. This brings investment levels by the company, since incorporation in 1997, to €103 million. Recent achievements in 2012 saw the Port of Cork complete a new compound in Ringaskiddy to accommodate a new Maersk transatlantic service which commenced in January 2012. This is the first Lo-Lo (Lift on Lift off) deep sea service in Ireland. A new dry bulk store at the Deep-water berth in Ringaskiddy was completed by port customer Arkady, which has helped to increase the volume of trade through the port. This will also help to facilitate the growth of the dry bulk sector. In 2012 the Port of Cork also took delivery of a new pilot boat named 'Failte' and won the business of servicing the Exxon Mobil oil exploration project.
Oil Traffic at Philips 66, Whitegate Oil Refinery amounted to 5 million tonnes, an increase of 1.36%. Non-oil traffic amounted to 3.64 million tonnes showing an increase on 2011 of 6%.
Container traffic through the port increased by 6%, bringing the total volume of containers handled at the port in 2012, to 166,285 TEU. Currently the Port of Cork has weekly container services calling to mainland Europe, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Zeebrugee and Southampton. A deep sea transatlantic container service linking Central America to North West Europe also operates weekly.
While the liquid bulk and container traffic increased, imports of animal feedstuffs also increased. The Port of Cork anticipates further increases in the agri-business, particularly when the reforms to the CAP come into effect in 2015.
In 2012, the Port of Cork welcomed 57 cruise liners, carrying in excess of 100,000 passengers and crew to the region. The visiting cruise liners make a very significant contribution to the economy. The investments made by the Port in recent years developing the cruise facilities in Cobh, continue to show positive returns with booking levels continuing to grow year on year. At the global annual cruise shipping exhibition, Seatrade Miami 2012, the Port of Cork was awarded 'Best Shore Side Welcome' and 'Best Tour Guides'. These awards highlight the commitment and effort the Port of Cork make for every cruise liner calling to Cork.
Brittany Ferries' weekly passenger service from Cork to Roscoff had another successful season operating between March and November 2012. The Port of Cork remains fully committed to establishing new routes from Cork and continues to work to develop a route from Cork to Northern Spain.
Consistent with the Strategic Development Plan Review of 2012, the Port of Cork is planning for the delivery of new Port infrastructure in the lower harbour. This key infrastructure will be required to service the businesses of Ireland for the next 20 years, as they grow and prosper and avail of trading opportunities in global markets. In 2012, by way of planning for this infrastructure, the port carried out a consultation process with An Bord Pleanála. Following the recent publication by Government of the National Ports Policy Statement, in which the Port of Cork was highlighted as a Tier 1 port of National Significance, it is hoped that such recognition will help to accelerate the consultation process. The Port of Cork proposes to lodge a planning application with An Bord Pleanála by the end of 2013, following further public consultation and community engagement.
During 2012, the port was involved in a number of local community based projects in Cork Harbour. Additionally, the very successful schools initiative organised by the port, continues to grow. Now in its seventh year, the initiative attracts up to 20 primary schools from the Cork city and harbour area and helps raise awareness of the Port of Cork and Cork Harbour among 5th class children.
Sustaining the quality of the environment in Cork Harbour, particularly in areas which have the potential to be affected or influenced by Port Operations remains a priority for the Company. The Port of Cork is as always committed to the highest standards of environmental management through the implementation of the environmental management programme and standards consistent with the renewed ISO14001 accreditation and Eco Ports foundation.