THE PORT of Newcastle has joined Shipping Australia, the industry body that represents Australia’s international ocean shipping industry.

Port of Newcastle has a deepwater shipping channel, which is currently operating at 50% of its capacity. The port said it handles about 4400 ship movements and 164 million tonnes of cargo every year.

With a deepwater shipping channel operating at 50% of its capacity, significant port land available and enviable access to national rail and road infrastructure, Port of Newcastle is positioned to further underpin the future prosperity of the Hunter, NSW and Australia.

Port of Newcastle senior manager strategic development Noel Dent said the port recognised the important role it played in building Australia’s prosperity by providing responsible, integrated and innovative supply chain systems.

“As Australia’s deepwater global gateway, Port of Newcastle is more than a port,” Mr Dent said.

“We exist to ensure Australian businesses can successfully compete in international markets – that requires a competitive and efficient pathway for imported and exported trade.”

“We know the criticality of our relationships with ocean shipping lines and shipping agents, particularly as we look to provide industry with new fit-for-purpose infrastructure and supply chain capability.”

Shipping Australia CEO Melwyn Noronha welcomed Shipping Australia’s newest member.

“Founded with a first export shipment in 1799 at a strategic location on the Australian east coast, the port at Newcastle has a fascinating commercial maritime history. Today, the seaport is at the centre of internationally important trade,” Mr Noronha said.

“With access to the port’s long-standing experience in providing services to international shipping, the expertise and input of the Port of Newcastle will further diversify our membership and enhance our ability to represent the maritime sector to government and to promote good policy.”