PORT Botany’s three container terminals are set to get an upgrade of their on-dock rail infrastructure, with the Patrick’s terminal to be the first to benefit with works scheduled to start next year.
“This investment will build greater rail capability at the port, supporting the Government’s investment in completing the Port Botany rail duplication and ongoing investments in large-scale intermodal rail logistics centres at Enfield and Moorebank,” NSW Ports chief executive officer, Marika Calfas, said.
“Over the next four years, NSW Ports will invest $120 million on Stage 1 of this uplift to create new on-dock rail capacity at Patrick’s Port Botany Terminal.”
The new rail terminal will deliver an annual capacity of 1 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs).
NSW Ports plans to invest at Port Botany’s other two container terminals, currently operated by DP World and Hutchison Ports, at a later stage.
Ms Calfas said growth of containers on rail to cater for the growing trade needs of NSW was a key objective in NSW Ports’ Masterplan.
“Increasing rail capacity at the port means a faster, cheaper, more sustainable way for exporters and importers to get their product to market.”
The investment is expected to reduce the growth in truck movements around the port.
When fully operational, the upgrade to all three terminals has been forecast to cut truck kilometres traveled by at least 10 million per year.
Patrick CEO Michael Jovicic said NSW Ports’ investment would be accompanied by a $70m spend from Patrick’s on operating equipment and systems to deliver the increased TEU capacity.
“Patrick currently handles a large volume of rail-based containers and is focused on growing and optimising our rail offering,” Mr Jovicic said.
“Our agreement with NSW Ports will significantly increase our terminal’s rail capacity and enhance productivity and efficiency in container movements at the port.”
To fund the investment, NSW Ports will increase its wharfage fees by $3.08 per TEU on full imports and exports from 1 July, 2019.
The increased wharfage charge will be removed once the cost of the investment has been recovered.
Investment will be staged, with stevedores being required to invest in rail-operating equipment to meet target terminal capacities.
Work will begin next year and is planned for completion by 2023.
Rail operations at Patrick are expected to continue during the construction period.
Port Botany is NSW’s largest container terminal, and is the exit point for much of the cotton and containerised grain and pulses grown in NSW from Narrabri south.
Source: NSW Ports