STATEMENT: Release of UNISCS Working Group Final Report
12 December 2019
The Board of Northport Ltd has welcomed the publication of the final report by the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy Working Group.
Northport Ltd Chairman Murray Jagger said:
“Northport has a very clear vision of the role it can play in the economic growth of Northland, Auckland and New Zealand.
“Significant growth is possible here. We have been clear for many years that we stand ready to assist in any way we can to support Auckland’s growth and the aspirations that Aucklanders have for their waterfront.
“We have been making headway with plans to enhance our ability to handle a substantial increase in the volume of container traffic crossing our wharf, while working on a vision for the total overhaul of the new and used-car business model. At the heart of which stands the immense amount of development land on our doorstep.
“We have also been working closely with MBIE and NZDF to develop a concept for a shipyard and floating drydock facility to support the maintenance requirements of both the navy and commercial shipping.
“None of this, however, is viable without absolute acknowledgement from central government that the transport infrastructure of the Upper North Island needs to change almost beyond recognition.
“The report published today, along with its recognition of the need for improved transport infrastructure, means that we can now speak with confidence about the potential opportunities that exist.”
Mr Jagger said he hoped to convene a meeting of the Chairs of all three companies involved – Northport, Port of Tauranga and Ports of Auckland.
“We need to digest the ramifications of what we’ve seen and heard today, and flesh out a win-win-win situation not just for our three communities, but for all of New Zealand.
“We then need to seek the input of tangata whenua, our wider communities, and business and civic leadership before bringing these suggestions to government.”
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Northport, situated at Marsden Point at the mouth of Whangarei Harbour, is New Zealand’s northernmost deep-water port. It is a flexible facility catering for large, multi-purpose vessels and full cargo handling facilities are available from its 570-metre linear berth.
Logs, woodchip and processed timber for export comprise the bulk of cargo handled by the port. Recent investment in container handling equipment has seen an uptake in coastal and international container trade. Other export items include kiwifruit, dairy products and manufactured goods. Imports are an important part of Northport’s business and include fertiliser, gypsum, coal and palm kernel.