The Port of Cork Company turnover in 2018 amounted to €35.4 million, an increase of €3.9 million from €31.5 million in 2017. The combined traffic of both the Ports of Cork and Bantry increased to 10.66 million tonnes in 2018 up from 10.3 million tonnes in 2017, an increase of 0.3 million tonnes or 3% due to increased bulk cargo activity as result of the 2018 fodder crisis and increased container traffic at Tivoli.
The profit on ordinary activities before taxation amounted to €5.1 million and the profit after taxation for the financial year amounted to €4.4 million.
In May 2018, the Port of Cork Company commenced the Ringaskiddy Port Redevelopment project in the lower harbour which will future-proof the Port of Cork Company as an international gateway for trade. The full development involves the construction of new container handling facilities in Ringaskiddy, followed by an extension to the existing deep-water berth in due course. This key strategic project will cost circa €86 million in the period 2017 – 2020 with funding secured from EIB, AIB and ISIF, (the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund) along with (CEF) Continuing Europe Facility grant aid and Company resources.
John Mullins Chairman of the Port of Cork said: ‘Overall we are very pleased with the 2018 annual results as we move forward with the Ringaskiddy Port Redevelopment. The stated policy of the Board of the Port of Cork Company is to support the Shareholder and following approval from the Board in April 2019; the Directors agreed a dividend payment of €250,000 in 2019 in respect of the 2018 financial year.’
The Irish Economy is dependent on the ability of its Ports to trade successfully and the Port of Cork Company is a critical component of the national transport infrastructure network and therefore must continue to invest in modern, sustainable and well-connected infrastructure and superstructure. In 2018 Port of Cork Company signed a contract with Liebherr Container Cranes to supply two post panamax size ship to shore (STS) container gantry cranes to the Port of Cork for the new Cork Container Terminal in Ringaskiddy.
The Port of Cork Company is constantly monitoring the potential impact of Brexit on port activities from both a national and EU trade perspective and according to the Chief Executive, Brendan Keating: ‘Discussions with Government Departments, Customs and the Gardai in relation to potential impacts of Brexit are ongoing. The commencement by Brittany Ferries of the new shipping RoRo service direct from Ringaskiddy, Cork to Santander and Roscoff in May 2018, was a welcome and successful route and we will continue to monitor the potential impacts Brexit may have on our business and that of our customers.’
In 2018, the Port hosted 93 cruise ships, carrying in excess of 200,000 passengers and crew. The Port of Cork Company’s continued commitment to the cruise business is reinforced by its work with Cork County Council in planning for the provision of a second dedicated cruise berth in Cobh at Lynch’s Quay. To this end “Expression of Interests” was invited and a number of submissions are currently under consideration.