Annual Review 2014
We’ve had an outstanding year. 968,741 TEU (one TEU is a standard 20-ft container) and 5,679,325 tonnes of bulk and break-bulk goods, including 207,591 cars. A dividend of $66.6m for the benefit of Auckland ratepayers. All records.
Why has this year been so good? Because we are now doing things better. Since 2011, we’ve reorganised the company so it is streamlined and efficient. We work as one port and we put our customers first.
One week this year we handled over 10,000 cars – twice as many as we handled a month during the peak of the recession. It was difficult, but we did it by working with the industry and by being more flexible across of the port. Cars stretched from Captain Cook wharf in the west to Freyberg in the east, nestled amongst iron-sand exports. Three years ago that would have been impossible.
Three times this year we broke the record for the number of containers handled in a month at a New Zealand port; twice in our ‘quiet’ period. We had to work hard to accommodate those volumes, but thanks to our improved efficiency and flexibility we did it and we did it well.
It is a credit to our people we were able to handle these record volumes so smoothly, and we would like to thank all of our hardworking and innovative staff for their efforts this year.
There has been a lot going on behind the scenes to make our organisation better still. We changed our recruitment and assessment processes to remove barriers to the employment of women stevedores. We now have 20 women stevedores who are achieving at the highest level. We’ve started a new exercise programme (PortFit and BoxFit) which gives staff the opportunity to improve their strength and fitness and get to know each other better.
CARS HANDLED IN ONE WEEK
We work as one port and we put our customers first.
Chief Executive Officer
We’ve been investing to meet future growth. We received building consent to extend the container terminal wharf by 50 metres. Work will start soon and is due to be complete by October 2015. Our container truck grid is being made bigger with a better layout, so we can get containers in and out more smoothly. We have increased the number of containers handled on rail by 64%. We bought a new tug to help us handle larger ships and new straddle carriers with advanced energy saving and control systems, which will improve our speed and keep our carbon footprint down. These investments mean can serve Auckland as it grows, as we have done for nearly 175 years.
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing. We have delayed the implementation of a new terminal operating system until we are confident it can be introduced seamlessly. That is now not likely to take place until early 2015, after the import peak season.
While this year has been good, we need to sound a note of caution for the coming year. The increase in container volumes this year was from a low base following the industrial dispute two years ago. It is unlikely we will see a similar rate of increase this year. As part of their deal with Tauranga and Kotahi, Maersk has withdrawn a major service from Auckland and will now send a large chunk of Auckland imports via Tauranga. We will lose volume as a result. However, it creates an opportunity for us to work with other shipping lines to attract business from importers who don’t want their goods to travel an extra 250km. Why do that when you can ship to Auckland faster and with fewer carbon miles via the port on your doorstep?
Overall, the future is reasonably bright for Auckland’s port. Auckland is growing and so is its freight demand. We offer the shortest, greenest freight route to the Auckland market and we’re one of the most efficient ports in Australasia. The investments we are making now will boost that efficiency with more smart investment planned. There are exciting times ahead.
Auckland is growing fast and so is its freight demand.