Shannon Foynes Port Company, the largest bulk port authority in Ireland, has announced a €50m investment at its facility in Foynes, Co Limerick.
Launched by Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe, the investment is the first in a series of key expansions aimed at transforming the Shannon Estuary into a major national and international economic hub.
The company hopes to create some 2,000 jobs over the next 30 years.
In addition to this, the minister also confirmed that two private companies would be investing a total of €26m in the port in the coming year. The private investment includes the CPL investment in a biomass plant, bringing 142 jobs by 2015, and the 40,000 square foot storage facility being developed by Argosea.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Donohoe said: “These announcements are the first phase of a significant investment programme which seeks to double SFPC trade in the next three decades in line with its ambitious masterplan, Vision 2041.
Construction of an additional four acres of quayside to attract the world's largest cargo ships is to begin this month. It will see the SFPC commence a seven year programme in quayside infrastructure development - with a €12.5m investment in infilling of 3.45 acres on the port's east jetty. Preliminary works for second phase - connecting the east and west jetties - have already begun. The third phase, the reclamation of a further two hectares, is to commence when phase 2 is finished. All three phases will add over 35,000m2 and additional berthage.
The new open quay storage area on the east-jetty will enable the company to berth 40,000 ton vessels directly alongside the quay, leading to faster turnaround times for customers and creating significant opportunities for growing cargo handling on the jetty in line. The SFPC currently helps to facilitate international trade valued at more than €6bn a year through its six port facilities on the estuary.
The CareersPortal Team