Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 6th 2013 Contents Exchange. We do not receive any subventions from
the Government. We are required to be profitable
and, as a result, we must operate with a private sector
mentality to ensure we are viable and sustainable."
He said Plipdeco has been successful because of
little government interference.
"The Government does not get involved in the
day-to-day operations of Plipdeco. Of course, we
have requirements where we have to report to the
state on certain information on a monthly and annually
basis. But in terms of setting objectives, we are allowed
to operate as a viable entity. The board is appointed
by the Government, but it is also supportive and it
recognises its roles and recog-
nises that returns for sharehold-
ers must be maximised."
While Plipdeco is run along
business lines, he said the Port
of Port-of-Spain depends heav-
ily on government support.
Compared to other ports
internationally, Taylor said
Plipdeco is the "mid-range."
He said he would "shy away"
from giving any advice to the
Port of Port-of-Spain as it has
its own unique situation.
"I am sure that there are
things that the Port of Port-of-
Spain is doing that we can learn
from and vice versa. However,
that port has its own unique circumstances. That
port has been in existence for several decades and
they have survived on Government subventions. That
is part of their culture, but we also have to work
towards a culture of self-sufficiency."
JUNE 2013 • WEEK ONE www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
COVER STORY | BG5
From Page 4
We recently concluded a tendering process
for the acquisition of a new mobile harbour
crane and an award is to be made shortly.
Before the end of the year, we will acquire
three additional yard trucks."
He said unlike Panama and Jamaica that
are naturally situated on trade routes, T&T
is the most southern of the Caribbean islands
and so must add value to its ports to attract
traders and shippers.
Lines of business
Plipdeco has two major lines of business:
port operations and the industrial estate.
Taylor said the port operations account
for 65 per cent of Plipdeco's overall annual
revenue and the estate for 35 per cent. In
2012, Plipdeco's reported revenue of $242
million, a seven per cent increase compared
with the $225 million in turnover in 2011.
Port operations are broken down into
three major revenue earners: handling of
container cargo, management of the Point
Lisas harbour and warehouse operations.
Some of the goods that pass through the
port are manufactured imports from the Far
East and foodstuff from the United States.
What is exported is manufactured goods
intended for Caricom territories.
"We act as the landlord for the industrial
estate, which is approximately 865 hectares
and 100 tenants. So we are responsible for
the maintenance of the infrastructure, roads,
drainage, lighting and so on and to ensure
that the clients abide by the existing envi-
ronmental governance and so on."
He said revenue from the industrial estate
tends to be stable as the estate is full.
"Revenue from industrial estate manage-
ment accounts for about $50 million annu-
ally. We operate on a commercially viable
basis. We do not allow the cost of operations
to flounder and then use revenue from the
port to make up the shortfall. We want to
ensure that each operating centre can operate
on its own and be profitable."
Taylor said revenue from the management
of the industrial estate is important, but
Plipdeco's management does not solely rely
"It would not be as profitable without
that $50 million revenue, but we would still
function as a going concern.
He said there was a "small increase" in
profitability from $17.6 million in profit
before tax in 2011 to $17.9 million in 2012.
"That profit would have been substantially
higher were it not for us having concluded
in early 2012 negotiations with the majority
union, the Seamen and Waterfront Workers'
Trade Union (SWWTU) and the retroactive
payments that had to be made. Were it not
for that, profits would have been substan-
He attributed profits in 2012 to revised
tariffs in September 2012 and a 14 per cent
increase in containerised cargo movement.
"We have actually seen an increase in
market share in containerised cargo of 46
per cent to 54 per cent. We are actually the
dominant player locally as far as container-
ised domestic cargo. We have now surpassed
the Port of Port-of-Spain. The main reason
for this is service, productivity and effi-
For the first quarter of 2013, he said there
was a profit before tax of $13.5 million.
"The tariff increase was only implemented
in September 2012, so that would have taken
effect in the first part of 2013. There was
also an increase in the amount of general
cargo of nine per cent."
Plipdeco vs Port of Port-of-Spain
He compared the Port of Port-of-Spain
to the Point Lisas port and the differences
in how they are run.
"Plipdeco is required to operate on com-
mercial terms. We are 51 per cent state
owned and 49 per cent private sector and
we are actively traded on the T&T Stock
ASHLEY TAYLOR, chief executive officer, Pt Lisas Industrial Port Development Corporation.
PHOTOS: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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