Higher port fees to help cut State debt
Pilbara Ports Authority will experience major change in the coming financial year as the State Budget focuses on the big iron ore exporter.
With Government debt expected to hit $43.8 billion by 2019-20, Treasurer Ben Wyatt’s first Budget revealed Government trading enterprises would be expected to pay $807 million over four years.
The State will recoup a higher portion of the profit from iron ore ports operated by the Pilbara Ports Authority, such as Port Hedland and Dampier, where the dividend payout ratio will climb to 90 per cent for 2016-17 before falling back to 75 per cent.
There will also be an increase in PPA port dues, with a 17 per cent increase in the 2017-18 financial year to be applied no later than October 1. The changes are expected to improve the State’s debt position by $95 million.
The budget also outlined $33.8 million in 2017-18 and 2018-19 to replace the berth three deck at the Port of Port Hedland.