Activity at Aberdeen Harbour "steady"News // September 24, 2015
Aberdeen Harbour has recorded a solid start to the year, with vessel traffic remaining on forecast and consistent with the previous year’s performance.
Results from the first six months show that vessel tonnage is up slightly at 13.5million tonnes, compared to 13.3million tonnes in 2014. Of this, oil and gas related tonnage is up 1 per cent. Total vessel arrivals are down slightly on the previous year, at 3,780 compared to 3,795 in 2014. Cargo throughput is also down 1.11 per cent, with 2.13 million tonnes, compared to 2.15 million tonnes for the same period the previous year.
The port continues to support oil and gas operations worldwide, including those in West Africa, Norway, Australia and the Falkland Islands. This summer also saw Aberdeen Harbour welcome international cruise-ship passengers, including more than 400 from the United States, and almost 300 passengers from Australia and New Zealand. This contributed to an overall rise in passenger numbers.
Colin Parker, chief executive of Aberdeen Harbour said: “Results for the first half of the year have remained steady and on forecast. However, we must be able to adapt to the market around us – something that the port has been doing for the last 800 years.
"If current market conditions remain in the oil and gas sector, for example, we may well see an increase in decommissioning activity. As such, we have improved the facilities in the harbour to ensure we continue to support the needs of our customers.
“Aberdeen Harbour is not just an oil and gas port, and we continue to serve many industries including agriculture and renewables among others. The connection with Shetland and Orkney is also very important to the harbour and we welcome the increase in passenger numbers for the first half of the year.”
The results come as Aberdeen Harbour Board continues with its feasibility studies into the potential of expanding the current harbour into neighbouring Nigg Bay. The main driver for the development of additional marine facilities is the ability to accommodate larger vessels, which are a growing trend across many industries. This means Aberdeen will be able to grow existing business streams, whilst encouraging new ones. It is estimated that the accumulative economic contribution made by an expanded harbour to the city and region would be approximately £2 billion GVA by year 20, supporting just under 16,000 equivalent jobs.