Plan to develop ports

A MASTER plan is in progress to develop Fiji’s ports.

Fiji Ports Corporation Ltd CEO Vajira Piyasena said the master plan was developed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in consultation with the Ministry of Public Enterprises.

“The ADB had come up with a draft seven-year master plan but this is being discussed with the ministry. They had identified areas for development in terms of port areas. Similarly for Lautoka some progress has been identified,” Mr Piyasena said.

He said many of Fiji’s infrastructure especially wharves and ports around the country were in need of repairs with some structures such as the Levuka wharf being more than 120 years old.

He said considerations must be given to the main ports where ships from other countries berth.

“How we are going to overcome these challenges is basically in the master plan and whether to build a terminal.

“The first option is that it would have to sustain 200,000 containers or 600,000 containers.

“This has been identified in this master plan but I believe from the ministry, they were looking at a more extensive sort of master plan to see whether this facility should be here or not.

“We should consider developing other areas because of the condition of the hinterland. There could be increased traffic if a larger port comes in.

“These things are being discussed and no firm decision has been taken because the master plan is in a draft stage.

“One solution is to have a new port facility but there’s also the time span that we have to consider.

“According to the ADB consultant they say we should start by 2018,” Mr Piyasena said.

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