Forth Ports said it plans to make the “largest investment in the history of the Port of Dundee” by investing more than £10 million to create a new ‘heavy lift’ quayside to position the port at the forefront of the North Sea oil & gas decommissioning and offshore wind sectors.
“This is an important, privately funded investment for the Port of Dundee which is ideally placed to service the needs of North Sea oil & gas, decommissioning and Scotland’s offshore wind sector over the coming years,” said Forth Ports chief executive Charles Hammond.
“The port’s existing skills base and location, combined with its riverside berths, deep water and rock river bed, put the port in a key position to become a hub for these sectors for construction, operations and maintenance and for decommissioning.
“Our investment also puts Dundee in a position to benefit from offshore renewable projects such as Neart na Gaoithe which has the potential to deliver cost efficient renewable energy and economic benefits for Dundee.
“We are committed to investing in the port to ensure that the infrastructure is in place to support these industries and for the city of Dundee to fully capitalise on the significant opportunities they present.”
Neart na Gaoithe is a 450 megawatt offshore wind farm proposed for the Outer Forth Estuary in the North Sea.
Scottish ministers awarded offshore planning consent for the development but it is now the subject of a judicial review.
Forth Ports said the investment will result in the development of the quayside at the east end of the port, connecting to the existing Prince Charles Wharf.
The new quayside will offer heavy lift capability over its entire 200 metre length with an ultra-heavy lift pad at one end.
“This capability, coupled with a deep-water berth and significant land area of around 60 acres, will facilitate the handling of the largest cargoes, as demanded by these emerging North Sea industry sectors,” said Forth Ports.
Business at the Port of Dundee has grown in the past 12 months — its handled a record 60,000 tonnes of barley during the harvest of 2015, reflecting its importance to the local agricultural sector.
Renewed interest in Dundee from the passenger cruise sector will see cruise liner visits to the port increase from six in 2015 to 10 in 2016, with more growth expected when the V&A Museum of Design opens in 2017.
Forth Ports Limited owns and operates eight ports in the UK — Tilbury on the Thames, Dundee on the Firth of Tay and six on the Firth of Forth — Leith, Grangemouth, Rosyth, Methil, Burntisland and Kirkcaldy.