The cargo port is the lifeline of our island nation but the facility is severely constrained by cruise operations at the Royal Watler Cruise Terminal. It shares space with cruise passengers and tour operators, a less than ideal situation that is unsafe, inconvenient and inefficient. Consequently, the space allocated for cargo is too small to resourcefully handle the volume of goods that our island receives. Additionally, the port’s physical structure is degrading and in need of repairs.
Currently, the port is averaging six to eight per cent growth each year in cargo and the strain of limited space makes it difficult to safely discharge two cargo ships at once. Without the upgrades and additional dock space, if the growth continues, as is expected, cargo vessels will have to wait their turn out at sea.
It is therefore not only essential for the cargo port to be expanded; it also makes practical and economic sense for the redevelopment and expansion to take place at the same time that the berthing facility is built. An enlarged and modernised port will ensure that both cargo and cruise passengers are handled more efficiently and safely in the future.