Port pres­sure con­cerns

Southern Telegraph - - NEWS -

The City of Kwinana has wel­comed In­fra­struc­ture Aus­tralia’s 2019 In­fra­struc­ture Pri­or­ity List, with Mayor Carol Adams say­ing it fur­ther demon­strated the im­por­tance of an outer har­bour at Kwinana to al­le­vi­ate pres­sure on Fre­man­tle Port.

Re­leased last Thurs­day, the re­port recog­nised the need to im­prove port fa­cil­i­ties to sup­port WA’s con­tainer trade, with the con­tainer port in Fre­man­tle said to be lim­ited by ur­ban de­vel­op­ment con­strain­ing road and rail con­nec­tions.

In 2017- 18, Fre­man­tle Port han­dled about 750,000 con­tain­ers, and trade is ex­pected to grow on av­er­age by 2.8 per cent each year be­tween 2017- 18 and 2067- 68, which could see it reach ca­pac­ity in about 15 years.

The re­port said ca­pac­ity con­straints would need ad­dress­ing if the freight sup­ply chain was to re­main ef­fi­cient, with ad­di­tional con­tainer ter­mi­nal fa­cil­i­ties, whether lo­cated at the cur­rent Fre­man­tle site, or at a new outer har­bour at Kwinana, need­ing to be served by road and rail con­nec­tions that pro­vide ca­pac­ity for growth over the eco­nomic life of the fa­cil­i­ties.

Mrs Adams said she was buoyed by the re­port and said it was a fur­ther demon­stra­tion of the im­por­tance for an outer har­bour and the State Govern­ment’s com­mit­ment to the West­port Project.

“The City hopes to see the timely de­vel­op­ment of a con­tainer ter­mi­nal at the outer har­bour in Kwinana, which would be the cat­a­lyst for eco­nomic growth and more lo­cal jobs to the re­gion,” she said.

Mrs Adams added that a new port at Kwinana would also help strengthen WA to take full ad­van­tage of the bat­tery metal boom.

The West­port Task­force was an­nounced in Septem­ber 2017 to de­liver a strat­egy to meet the fu­ture freight and trade lo­gis­tics needs for Perth and sur­round­ing re­gions, and will con­sider the de­vel­op­ment and growth of the Fre­man­tle Port at the in­ner and outer har­bours, as well as the po­ten­tial for the Port of Bunbury to con­trib­ute to the han­dling of the grow­ing trade task.

The West­port Task­force strat­egy is ex­pected to be re­leased later this year.

Carol Adams

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