Napier Port’s diverse trade portfolio has mitigated the ongoing effects of the pandemic – including the lack of cruise vessel visits – with a ‘resilient’ half-year revenue and earnings result.
The first half of the financial year has seen a record log export volume, with bulk cargo revenue increasing by $4.2 million, or 26.5%, to $20.2 million driven by a 20.6% increase in log exports to 1.43 million tonnes.
Port revenue rose 0.6% to $52.6 million from $52.3 million in the same period last year, despite Covid-19 preventing cruise vessel visits, which generated $4.2 million in the same period last year.
Napier Port chief executive Todd Dawson said the disruptions to global shipping over the last year have presented considerable challenges to Napier Port and its customers.
“Solid log flows across Napier Port have been sustained in response to the strong export market conditions. At the same time, congestion – particularly in the upper North Island – has seen 26 container ships miss their scheduled calls. Schedule changes and interruptions have resulted in volatile container flows and cargo owners struggling with shipping container equipment and space availability. On port, containers have dwelled longer, limiting operational space.”
Demand for the region’s food and fibre exports remains robust; however the impact of labour shortages and supply chain disruptions on trade remains uncertain.
“Notwithstanding the government’s recent moves to increase the availability of seasonal labour in the future, the impact of worker shortages on seasonal export industries remains uncertain. Pipfruit exports are tracking in line with the prior year, but it is not clear what the eventual export crop size for this year will be as a result of the seasonal labour shortages. Similar dynamics are at play across all fresh produce sectors.”