Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Staff to Benefit as Port Doubles Pre-Tax Profits; LOGISTICS

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Staff to Benefit as Port Doubles Pre-Tax Profits; LOGISTICS

Article excerpt

Byline: TOM KEIGHLEY tom.keighley@ncjmedia.co.uk

PORT of Tyne almost doubled pre-tax profits to more than PS10.2m in 2014 thanks to improved productivity.

Some 570 staff at the business will now benefit from a profit sharing plan which equates to 6% of profits.

Turnover fell by 3% from last year's record levels, to PS71.5m, as year-onyear cargo volumes dropped due to falls in imported coal.

Overall cargo volumes handled on the River Tyne - at 6.7m tonnes - were the highest for over 25 years and 96% of all cargoes were handled at Port of Tyne berths.

The Port of Tyne handled over 5m tonnes of conventional and bulk cargo in 2014, accounting for 75% of the volumes handled in total.

Exports of Nissans and imports and shipments of VWs and Audis, provided another strong year at the Port's three car terminals.

Port of Tyne chief executive officer Andrew Moffat explained that crane outages in 2013 had caused signifi-cant repair and maintenance costs, which had been avoided in 2014.

He said: "The Port has shown a strong performance in the past 12 months both in terms of volumes and financial results.

"EBITDA, our earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, was over PS17m, almost equalling our record performance recorded in 2012.

"Overall the reduction in coal volumes is due to reduced demand from the Port's power-generating customers. Factors influencing this include the prevailing market circumstances, weather conditions, and lower prices associated with alternative fuel sources such as gas and oil.

"In addition, the planned conversion of coal-fired power stations to wood pellet has not happened as quickly as originally anticipated.

"I am particularly pleased that the regional economic impact of the Port of Tyne, in terms of Gross Value Added, grew by 10% to over PS560m - and the number of jobs in the wider community supported by the Port also increased, to over 11,200. …

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