Antwerp Port Authority Invests $2.2B

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

October 7, 2010

The board of directors of Antwerp Port Authority has approved the long-term financial plan (2011-2025), representing an amount of $2.2b. With this ambitious investment plan the Port Authority is banking on the future. This plan is only possible thanks to the sustainable financial policy that the Port Authority has followed in recent years.

"It is these financial results, without trying to maximize profits, that even after a period of crisis give us a sufficient financial basis to implement this investment program that is so important to our customers, and to go ahead with the priority activities and investments," said Port Authority CEO Eddy Bruyninckx.

Keeping Antwerp competitive as the second-largest port in Europe is given substance by the Total Plan and further put into practice by this long-term program, with the annual amount of investment being doubled in comparison with previous years. Over the next 15 years the Port Authority will invest $2.2b in expansion of the port (development of the Verrebroek dock and Saeftinghe Development Area), port facilities (construction of a second lock on the left bank, dock renovation, modifications to the Canal dock and the Waasland Canal), equipment (purchase of a new suction dredging barge, new tugboats, dumb barges, a pusher barge and dock-mounted cranes and mobile cranes) and buildings. Additional expenditure is planned for purchase of land from General Motors (GM), which is closing its Antwerp plant, and financial contributions to the Oosterweel mobility project and the Port of Antwerp Stadium. As regards the use to be made of the site of GM the Port Authority will join the discussions with the Flemish government with a view to setting up an industrial project. However, it could also be used for logistics purposes.

When it came to approving the Port Authority's long-term financial plan, special attention was given to the future levels of port dues. The board of directors decided to freeze the 2011 rates at the 2010 level.

"Antwerp Port Authority remains a reliable partner of port users in terms of the rates charged for services. Continuing to offer attractive but realistic rates for port dues is an important competitive factor. The rates policy for the port is characterized by continuity (with index-linking where appropriate), not by shifting political considerations with sudden increases or decreases," stated CEO Eddy Bruyninckx.

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