Brisbane port still growing, 'ready to be privatised'

Total trade at the Port of Brisbane grows for 16th year, largely thanks to bumper grain and coal exports

September 9, 2009

Total trade at the Port of Brisbane have grown for the 16th consecutive year, largely thanks to bumper grain harvests and coal exports.

But container trade dropped by 4.9 percent to 896,199 TEUs, with recession fears hitting domestic markets.

Total trade reached 31.9 million tonnes, a total increase of 5.6 percent boosted by a 17.5 percent hike in exports to 15.5 million tonnes for the year.

Cereal exports increased by a massive 273 percent, while coal was up by 15 percent on the previous year.

Queensland Minister for Transport Rachel Nolan announced the results in Parliament last week and says they strengthened the Government’s decision to privatise the port.

"These trade results demonstrate that the Port of Brisbane is a strong, mature, commercial organisation that no longer needs to remain in government ownership," Nolan says.

"The Port of Brisbane is well positioned to grow and expand as a private organisation. In private ownership, the port will benefit from being able to access the full financial and technical resources of the commercial sector."

Nolan says a plan will be in place on how best to sell the port by the end of this year and until then the government will focus heavily on reducing the facility's greenhouse gas emissions.

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