Freight logistics company NZL Group has submitted its plan to re-establish a container terminal at the Port of Tauranga.
In a move that is likely to provoke legal action from the Port of Tauranga Ltd (PTL), NZL director Ken Harris said the company’s subsidiary, Sulphur Point Container Terminal Ltd, submitted the six-step plan, which allows for its own terminal to be running by January, 2010.
Mr Harris said the proposal, worth “tens of millions of dollars” would provide a more competitive environment for freight movements at the Sulphur Point port and would compete directly against PTL.
“NZL believes that competition creates the best result for the community and exporters in particular,” Mr Harris said.
“Financially, it’s a very attractive proposition.”
NZL Group, which was purchased from P&O Containers in 2006, operated its own container terminal at the port prior to 2004. It then merged its terminal with that of PTL in an arrangement that saw NZL provide labour and machinery to the operation.
The five-year contract has expired and Mr Harris said NZL was unable to reach a realistic commercial arrangement with PTL moving forward.
“So we’ve exercised our right to re-establish a full service container terminal at Sulphur Point,” Mr Harris said.
He said a “backstop” clause in the merger contract allowed for NZL to re-establish an operation at the port. However, acting PTL chief executive Graeme Marshall said the company had a different view on NZL’s right to re-establish an operation there.
He said it was premature for NZL to be making any form of pubic commitment when there are still contractual issues to be resolved.
The port company would need to consider the plan as a landlord, but from a competitive perspective, the finer points of the 2004 contract might eventually be argued in court.
Mr Harris said PTL needed time to digest the six-step timetable before he would make it public. However, he did reveal the plans allowed for the creation of up to 60 fulltime jobs, which is a move away from the “casualisation” of the port.
“The industry has become very casualised and we can create permanent jobs, which has been a big part of our thinking behind all of this.”
Negotiations between NZL and PTL continued for more than 12 months and ended with no resolution last December.
NZL Group is a stevedoring and freight logistics company that offers line haul, container movement, storage and distribution services.
Mr Harris said the company’s plan allows for new machinery including container straddle carriers and upgraded offices.
This article is tagged with the following keywords. Find out more about MyNBR Tags
- MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares mixed; Spark, Fletcher join Asian rally, Xero drops as Drury trims stake
- NZ dollar gains vs. Australian dollar after mining investment slumps across the Tasman
- Sir Ralph Norris spells out reasons for Fonterra board departure
- Xero directors Drury, Winkler and Morgan cash in on 35% share price rally
- iPredict closing down due to money laundering risk
Most listened to
- “A very ballsy thing to do” – Rodney Hide and Kelvin Davis discuss Serco’s response to Correction’s Mt Eden Prison report
- “The response from shareholders has been overwhelming” — A2 Corporation chief executive Geoff Babidge
- Greg Gent says a board of 13 people is "prehistoric"
- Arvida CEO Bill McDonald on his company's half-year net profit
- Lance Wiggs on the future of food exports
- Auckland Councillor Chris Darby on the Council's alternative funding report
- Nevil Gibson discusses his latest Editor's Insight on oil prices
- Campbell Gibson, Nick Grant and Chelsea Armitage chat about the inner workings of New Zealand media
- Paul Brislen discusses the 'snake oil' sales tactics of SalesConcepts
- Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings reveals his ambitious China plan
- UDC Finance chief executive Wayne Percival talks about the company's profit
- Hamish McNicol discusses the latest court stories