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Overall stable volume
at Port of Vancouver in 2016

2017-03-08

McKeil Marine's Evans Spirit  won the International Bulk Journal's 2016 Ship of the Year Award during the IBJ's Salute to Excellence in the Maritime Bulk Industry gala awards ceremony in London, UK on November 21.
"It's a fantastic way to closeout our 60th anniversary year: having a vessel named after our founder, Evans McKeil, win this prestigious international award," said Steve Fletcher, President and CEO of McKeil Marine.
Acquired by McKeil in 2015, the Evans Spirit is a cargo ship with the shallow draught characters of a tug and barge; however, compared to a tug-and-barge unit, she can transport approximately 40 per cent more cargo about 50 per cent faster on a very similar amount of fuel.  She is in service throughout the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River.
Evans Spirit was shortlisted for 2016 Ship of the Year competing with three other vessels: CS Bright, Mitsui OSK Lines, Japan;  Damen Shipyards, Netherlands; and MN Baroque, Swiss Marine, Switzerland. The award is presented to the owner, operator or builder of an outstanding individual bulk ship. Judged on operational efficiency, design innovation, safety and environmental protection, the Evans Spirit was selected as winner. (Photo Paul Beesley).

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority reported that overall volume at Canada's largest port decreased slightly to 136 million tonnes of cargo, down 1.8 per cent from 2015. Sectors experiencing declines were offset by others that hit new records, including the bulk grain sector.

"One of our biggest strengths has been, and continues to be, the port's ability to accommodate the most diversified range of cargo of any port in North America," said Robin Silvester, president and chief executive officer of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority. "Since 2013, the Port of Vancouver has experienced its fourth consecutive year of traffic volumes over 135-million-tonnes, despite global economic downturns."

Last year was the Port of Vancouver's third consecutive year of record volumes in bulk grain and its fifth year of an upward trend. Bulk grain export volumes through the port increased 1.3 per cent from 2015, to reach 21.8 million metric tonnes in 2016. Strong global demand for Canadian agriculture was met with a bumper crop in Canada and increased exports of grain through the Port of Vancouver.

"The continued growth in grain volumes through the Port of Vancouver demonstrates the strong reputation of Canadian grain and reflects the expansion plans we are seeing for this commodity in particular," continued Mr. Silvester. "Demand for Canadian grain from many countries is being met by farmers across Canada and by terminals who continue to invest in new technology."

Containerized exports increased by 3.3 per cent due to growth in woodpulp, grain and food and agri-product shipments. This increase was offset by a 2.4 per cent decline in loaded import containers, partly due to the return of some traffic to U.S. west coast ports after their 2015 labour dispute, leading to a flat result in overall laden container volumes for 2016. Total box volume measured in TEUs declined by 4 per cent to 2.93 million units.

The weak Canadian dollar and a slowdown in industry investment and development activity in western Canada was reflected in the 17.2 per cent decline in metal and project cargo imports in 2016. A 22 per cent drop in breakbulk lumber and wood pulp also contributed to a decline in overall import and export breakbulk volumes.

Metallurgical coal volumes increased 1.8 per cent in 2016 due to a 64.3 per cent increase in exports to India and sustained demand from Japan, China, and South Korea. Overall coal volumes were down by 6.1 per cent in 2016, due to a 28.2 per cent decrease in thermal coal exports. (Photo VPA)

 
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