The Falkland Islands has approved the commencement of work that will lead to the delivery of new port facilities to support economic growth into the next decade. According to a release from the Falklands elected government, the new work will build on the substantial previous studies completed in 2012 and 2014, which investigated the viability of various sites, and resources are expected to be allocated during the 2017/18 budget process.
A release from the Falklands government states that in ”the meeting of Executive Council on 29 March 17, Members approved the commencement of work that will lead to the delivery of a new port for the Falkland Islands. In a confirmation that new port facilities will be necessary to support economic growth into the next decade, ExCo has recommended resources be allocated during the 2017/18 budget process, to establish the necessary program and acquire commercial, technical and engineering expertise to develop a final business case. If the budget is approved, the proposed implementation plan, including financing options, will be brought to ExCo for consideration in mid-2018.
In a separate decision, Members also approved a temporary, immediate augmentation of FIPASS capacity, at least until the end of 2018. Subject to final negotiations, FIG will take over operation of the Temporary Dock Facility (TDF), effective July 2017. TDF owners Premier Oil and Noble Energy have agreed in principle to this mutually beneficial arrangement that will provide much needed extra berthing space.
Modern port facilities are essential to economic development in the Falkland Islands, both to sustain existing successful industries and to take advantage of new opportunities. In particular, a new port can support expansion of activities in tourism, fishing, and oil & gas exploitation, as well as making the Falkland Islands a viable regional alternative for marine activities.
The new work will build on the substantial previous studies completed in 2012 and 2014, which investigated the viability of various sites. It will review potential locations and incorporate consultation with relevant industries, soft market testing of public-private partnership models and investigation of different funding alternatives, to ensure that the final proposal delivers the best value for all Falkland Islanders.
Chief Executive Barry Rowland said “I am pleased that ExCo has reaffirmed the importance of moving forward with the development of plans for a new port, and that we have been able to identify a short term solution for immediate improvement. To finally achieve a new port, FIG recognizes that dedicated resources will be required both within our organization and through outside expertise, and I am confident that the approach and resources approved today will allow us to deliver a robust, yet pragmatic range of options for Members to consider.”