22 Aug 2008

Bluff port result up

10:53 am on 22 August 2008

Despite some setbacks, profit at South Port rose 12.5% to $2.5 million in the year ending June.

Revenue at New Zealand's southernmost port at Bluff, increased by almost 6% to $15.2 million over the same period.

South Port says the lift in profitability was due to higher levels of break-bulk cargo, offseting the impact of volatility in port calls as shipping companies adjust to the soaring cost of fuel and economic trends.

Two of its shipping customers withdrew their services.

Looking ahead: the port company says the strength of the agricultural sector will continue to generate cargo passing through, as well as exports.

Based on a one-off gain from the sale of a 10% stake in Hardwood Forests, it expects earnings to further improve in the current financial year.