Short-sea shipping projects get funding

by Array

Nanaimo, British Columbia—The federal government sees a future in short-sea shipping on the West Coast.

Ottawa is spending a maximum of $4.65 million to help the Nanaimo Port Authority renovate its facilities and prepare them to handle new short-sea shipping activities. The money is part of the funding pool for the Asia-Pacifc Gateway and Corridor Initiative.

The port authority intends to modernized the Nanaimo Assembly Wharf area and rehabilitate an aging dock that has been inactive for over 10 years due to its poor condition.

“The Nanaimo Port Authority is extremely excited with the support from the federal government for our short-sea shipping initiative that will establish a direct water link for Vancouver Island importers and exporters to Asia-Pacific markets. The NPA’s long term vision is to improve and enhance the movement of international cargo for Vancouver Island,” said Robert Bennie, chair of Nanaimo Port Authority.

“This project will not only enhance the port’s ability to handle increased volume, in a more efficient manner, creating jobs, growth and prosperity in our communities,” said Nanaimo-Alberni MP Dr James Lunney. “It will also reduce road congestion and travel time for users.”

The government has also committed to paying for a container trans-shipment and short-sea shipping feasibility study in British Columbia.

The study will take place at Port Alberni. It will be designed to identify potential market opportunities, as well as assess the viability of a container trans-shipment and short-sea shipping distribution centre in the Alberni Inlet.

The federal government is contributing up to $225,000 to cover the cost of the study. As with the Nanaimo renovation, the money will come from the Asia-Pacifc Gateway and Corridor Initiative funds.