Ports Set to Tie Up Higher Profits; Welsh Operations Help Boost ABP

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), December 18, 2003 | Go to article overview

Ports Set to Tie Up Higher Profits; Welsh Operations Help Boost ABP


ASSOCIATED BRITISH PORTS'S five Welsh ports have helped the company to a buoyant profits forecast.

The company yesterday issued a trading statement predicting revenues from its UK business would grow by at least 5% this year.

Almost a quarter of ABP's ports are in Wales, with the company operating ports at Swansea, Port Talbot, Barry, Cardiff and Newport.

Budha Majmudar, ABP's ports director for South Wales, said increased traffic had helped ABP's Welsh operations contribute to the predicted profits growth.

'The ports business in ABP has moves ahead strongly in 2003 and the Welsh ports have contributed to that growth,' he said.

'We are looking forward to a good 2004 and building on that growth.'

Mr Majmudar said all areas of traffic had shown improvement, but an increase in traffic generated by a rise in steel production had been a significant factor this year.

'In South Wales we have seen an increase in all our major commodities,' he said

'Corus in particular has done a lot of exporting of material and that is good news for the Welsh economy.

'In Cardiff we suffered a blow with the loss of ASW but we have seen Celsa exporting material out of Cardiff in the last 10 months and seen this volume increase.'

He said the re-commissioning of the number five blast furnace at Port Talbot had also seen levels of coal and ore traffic rise in 2003.

The Welsh ports had also seen growth in the other two core areas of timber and scrap this year, Mr Majumdar said.

He added that there was a contract to export logs and wood-chip through the ports of Swansea and Cardiff and this could yield further growth next year. …

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