ABP Ipswich, the UK’s leading export port for agricultural products, has broken records again as the port welcomed larger vessels and saw a surge in ship calls in 2016.
The growth has come after investments of around US$5 million (£5.4 million) were made over the last year in upgrading facilities and replacing equipment, including the construction of a new bulk store which is due for completion in April.
In total, 743 ships called at the port, up 8% from 2015 figures and aligning with an increase of gross tonnage, which rose by 13% to 2.6 million gross tonnes last year.
Planning and cooperation between the port and marine authorities saw the largest ship to ever call at the port in December, the 157 metre-long Dijksgracht (pictured), which arrived at the Ipswich Grain Terminal with a shipment of 10,500 tonnes of rice from Texas, US.
Andrew Harston, ABP Short Sea Ports Director, said: “Our 2016 figures are yet another positive indicator of the importance of the Port of Ipswich to the broader East Anglian economy.
“An eight per cent increase in ship calls is a testament to the efforts of our staff and customers who are striving to continually grow their businesses.
“We are now looking forward to improving this result again in 2017.”