Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 27th 2014 Contents MARCH 2014 • WEEK FOUR www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
NEWS | BG7
In an interview in early March, Deo Gosine,
managing director, Labidco Port Services Ltd,
announced his intention to develop a trans-
shipment port that would have the throughput
of 2.5 million containers per annum. In three
meetings with Government officials, including
Vasant Bharath, Minister of Trade, Industry
and investment, Gosine disclosed the details
surrounding the proposed port.
The overall acreage for the port is 125 acres,
the first phase of which will comprise 92 acres.
Gosine had said "no additional area is required
for infrastructure because our terminal is sit-
uated in the La Brea Industrial Development
Company industrial estate, which has all infra-
structures already built in."
He estimated construction of the port to
begin in eight months, with a target of 3,000
jobs and a further 5,000 spin-off jobs to be
created. Gosine said he project would not harm
the environment, but will be built in cohesion
with the infrastructural development of the
"Our project will not endanger wildlife,
cause the removal of coastal mangrove veg-
etation, built in residential area, become a
nuisance to adjacent residential neighbours,
cause commercial traffic to traverse roadway
in residential areas and will be directly acces-
sible via the new Sir Solomon Hochoy Highway
extension being built to link San Fernando
with Point Fortin."
There would be no need to have "govern-
ment investment or handout" as it will create
"zero debt for our people and will have the
potential to add billions of US dollars to our
national economy over the economic life of
this project," Gosine said.
He said the proposed site is abandoned
property and has not been used for any eco-
nomic purpose for 50 years. The group of
companies which Gosine belongs to comprises:
Brighton Port Services, Labidco Port Services
Ltd and Brighton Logistics.
Some of the benefits of the proposed port:
-reduce the price of shipping to all importing
companies in Trinidad because of the direct
shipment from most major markets
-establish Trinidad =as a major transship-
ment location of choice for transshipment of
iron and aluminium ore from Brazil, Venezuela,
Guyana and Suriname
-alleviate the congestion at the Port of Port-
of-Spain and free existing port area for higher
value commercial development
-help Union Estate to grow
-reduce north/south commercial traffic
-spur US$1 billion investment in new con-
A report on the port rationalisation for T&T
issued by the Inter-American Development
bank in the La Brea area stated:
"The proposed Brighton International Ter-
minal is part of a 196-hectacre industrial park
owned by the National Energy Corporation.
The proposed La Brea site is much larger than
either the expanded Port-of-Spain or Point
Lisas. The site may include, in addition to
containers, facilities for bulk handling and
service dock for supply boats."
The study also presents stamm tements
regarding the expansion of the Panama Canal
and whether or not T&T's ports would increase
its volume: "For a service to use a T&T port
as the primary transshipment port for Panama
Canal shipments involves a huge deviation of
about 1,500 nautical miles. T&T is located too
far to the South to serve as a transshipment
hub for North American ports. We, therefore,
believe that the possibility of attracting more
business to T&T because of the Panama Canal
expansion can be ruled out from further analy-
permissible dimensions (length, breadth, and draft) for tran-
siting the Panama Canal, with a dead-weight capacity of about
The report said low-berth productivity at Port-of-Spain
stems from unavailability of enough STS cranes and the low
crane productivity. The issue of low productivity at Port-of-
Spain was observed as the most critical by all shipping lines
interviewed by the IDB consultants. Apparently, the issue has
been afflicting Port-of-Spain for a long time and therefore
extensively addressed in the latest PoS strategic plan, the
Past plans for expanding PoS included the construction of
two new perpendicular berths that would replace the present
port area and another, and a more ambitious plan proposed
in the past, included the construction of a new port at the
East Sea Lots area. "It seems to us that both plans are driven
mainly by real estate considerations since the existing port,
with modest investments, may have sufficient capacity to
handle the T&T traffic under any reasonable demand scenario,"
the report said.
Rehabilitating Berth 8 to create a modern post-Panamax
berth could add sufficient capacity to handle future demand.
Management recommends that a financial investment/accom-
modation be made to assist in effecting the turnaround and
sustainability of the cargo handling operations as a matter of
high priority, the report said.
While not explicitly stated, it seems that the intention in
this recommendation is a comprehensive institutional reform
leading to some form of privatisation, which would follow the
trend of most of the Caribbean hubs that are privately oper-
The report said the container terminal at Point Lisas is part
of the Point Lisas Industrail Development Corporation (Plipde-
co). Plipdeco is 51 per cent owned by the National Energy
Corporation, an agency of the national Government, and 49
per cent by the private sector. "It has more efficient operations
compared to PoS and is currently operated at near capacity,"
the IDB consultants said.
Turning to La Brea, the IDB consultants said: "There is no
container terminal in La Brea. The proposed Brighton Inter-
national Terminal is part of a 196-hectare industrial park
owned by the National Energy Corporation. The site is not
developed yet since there are no facilities and equipment for
handling containers there. The proposed La Brea site is much
larger than either the expanded Port-of-Spain or Point Lisas.
The site may include, in addition to containers, facilities for
bulk handling and service dock for supply boats."
T&T and regional container trends
As part of the Caribbean, T&T's container trade includes a
portion of trade for transshipment, but it also has an aspect
of domestic trade (imports and exports). Most of the domestic
trade handled at T&T ports is import cargo. Therefore, port
throughput related to domestic cargo is quite dependent on the
country's consumption trends and not on export volumes.
In order to be able to create a demand forecast through 2025
for T&T container traffic, an analysis of the various elements
that affect container traffic in the region is necessary beyond
purely historical T&T container volumes, the consultants said.
One of those aspects is assessing container volumes for the
Caribbean. As a whole, the Caribbean has experienced a solid
increase in port throughput since the 2008-2009 world economic
The Caribbean region is host to the main container hubs in
the hemisphere where intense trans-shipment activity occurs
to serve all trades in the Americas and the Caribbean
For the Caribbean islands, Caucedo in the Dominican Republic
has shown an impressive growth in the last five years, the report
said. In the Central America sub-region, of course the Pana-
manian terminals had steady growth but all the other countries
have also shown healthy growth rates. In South America, the
strong performance of the Colombian ports is significant, the
It said: "Since shipping services of T&T are part of those
serving the Caribbean Region, the Caribbean shipping services
are, in turn, part of a wider nework of shipping services that
connect the world's regions."
Continued from page 6
to start in eight months
Managing director of Labidco Port Services Ltd Deo Gosine shakes the hand of UTT's chairman Curtis R Manchoon, in the presence of Fazal
Karim, Minister of Science, Technology and Tertiary Education. On May 23, 2012, UTT signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with
Labidco. This MoU represents a partnership that will see UTT execute strategic programmes in port skills within the community of La Brea.
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