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    Offshore business sails into Port of Sunderland

    Company News // May 14, 2013

    A trio of offshore vessels have created a visible sign of success in the new and renewables sector at a burgeoning northeast port.

    Normand Pioneer, Maersk Responder and MPI Resolution, three offshore sector vessels, have all been docked at Port of Sunderland over the last week, after choosing Wearside’s waterside as a base for a number of recent projects.

    MPI Resolution, a jack-up offshore vessel, was berthed at Sunderland’s Greenwells Quay while awaiting a new job. The 140m vessel was based at the port for a week, before leaving for the North Sea on a new offshore project.

    Maersk Responder, an offshore construction vessel, is currently docked at the port, using it for a mobilisation project it is undertaking over the course of the next month.

    The trio of offshore visitors at the port was completed by multi-purpose anchor handler, Normand Pioneer, which undertook a cable spooling operation in Sunderland before heading out to the North Sea.

    Matthew Hunt, port director, said that the vessels’ presence at the port represented a very visible sign of the strides the port is taking in attracting major business to the shores of Sunderland.

    He said: “We have been working for a number of years to build Port of Sunderland’s reputation as a hub for new, renewable and offshore energy and subsea engineering projects, and it is fantastic that we are increasingly seeing that hard work come to fruition.

    “It doesn’t get much better than seeing three major offshore vessels berthed in the port at one time, a very visible sign that our endeavours and those of the council and port board are paying off.

    "It really does set out a very clear message to people in the city, region and beyond that Port of Sunderland is no longer a forgotten port, but one that is making a name for itself among some of the biggest names in the sector, and that is, increasingly, competing with ports up and down the country.”

    The arrival of the three vessels at Port of Sunderland follows a successful start to opening four months this year, with bosses having reported profit for the second year running, a major turn in fortune for the port, which was operating at a loss in previous years.

    Councillor Paul Watson, leader of Sunderland City Council and chair of the port of Sunderland board, said that the port had significantly strengthened its position over recent years and that the presence of major offshore vessels, something once very rarely seen in the city in the past, was a great reminder of the hard work underway to grow the sector.

    He said: “It is fantastic to see that the waters of the Wear are once again contributing to the prosperity of the city’s economy. The sight of major offshore vessels berthed at the port really does go to prove that we are getting our offer right in Sunderland, and providing support and services to businesses in the sector that really is second to none. It’s a real feather in our cap to have major names in the sector choosing to do business with our port and this is beginning to deliver real tangible benefits for the city.”

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