The company reported operating profits for the financial year of €1.7m, a significantly improved operating performance from the €250,000 recorded in 2016. Turnover was €7.6m (vs €6.3m in the previous year) and shareholder’s funds ended the year at €30.5m.
Bulk throughput came in at just over 1.3m tonnes, a 27% increase on 2016. Containers handled grew by 3% with strong results from project cargo and break bulk activity.
Frank Ronan, Chief Executive, Port of Waterford Co commented: “This has been an excellent trading year for Port of Waterford. Buoyancy in agri markets has driven strong demand for fertiliser and feedstuffs. These factors together with good construction demand and project cargo activity around renewable energy infrastructure has kept us very busy in Belview during 2017.”
Mr Ronan noted: “Activity during the first quarter of this year is pretty much in line with last year. We anticipate that some lines may not perform quite as strongly in 2018 as they did in 2017 due to market conditions. Having said that, we see some very significant and timely investments going ahead in the Port zone this year that will underpin and drive growth in 2019 and beyond.
“On the container handling side, we have not attracted any new services that would provide deep sea connections into the Port. However, we are seeing ongoing growth in our traditional short sea routes serving European markets. Brexit may well provide further opportunities for these load-on/load-off container services that bypass the UK land bridge and provide a very efficient solution for cargo into and out of Europe.”