Port of Napier hopes its major dredging project will take a big step forward before the end of the year.
The port company wants to deepen the harbour from 12.8m to 14.5m, extend the shipping channel and build a new berth.
The entire project is expected to cost close to $100 million.
The company is consulting the local community, iwi and stakeholders, and is hoping to lodge an application for resource consent before the end of the year.
Other ports, such as Tauranga, have been planning or undertaking dredging to enable much bigger ships to enter their harbours.