VIDEO: €50m investment announced for Foynes port

Colm Ward

Reporter:

Colm Ward

The Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe has announced a €50m investment in Foynes port which he says will help double its trade and create up to 2,000 jobs over the next 30 years.

The first phase of the investment will see €12.5m spent this year on infilling almost 3.5 acres on the port’s east jetty, with work getting underway this month. The remainder of the €50m will be spent over the next seven years, adding some 35,000 square metres of berthage.

In addition to this, the minister also confirmed that two private companies would be investing a total of €26m in the port in the coming year. The private investment includes the 142 job CPL investment in a biomass plant and the 40,000 square foot storage facility being developed by Argosea.

Speaking at the launch, Minister Donohoe said: “These announcements are the first phase of a significant investment programme which seeks to double SFPC trade in the next three decades in line with its ambitious masterplan, Vision 2041.

“The port is seeking to maximise the enormous potential of the Shannon Estuary and anticipates that the number of people employed in port activities will increase by 25% over the period of Vision 2041, with the economic benefits extending towards a much larger economic system.

“The long-term job creation figures, of up to 2,000 jobs, are based on anticipated expansion in existing heavy industries as well as planned projects such as the Shannon LNG terminal. I am delighted to see investment of this scale, knowing the impact it will have on the Mid-West region generally.”

SFPC chief executive Pat Keating said the investment would create real potential for further growth at the company and keep its aggressive plans on target. “The investment we are announcing is necessitated by significant growth at Foynes, our largest port, with tonnages almost back to the peak of 2006. We are reaching capacity at the East Jetty and this investment will facilitate significant additional growth at the port,” he said.