GLADSTONE Ports Corporation has awarded Smit Lamnalco the five-year exclusive contract for towage services in the Port of Gladstone.

The licence was awarded after a competitive tender process and will commence on 1 January 2019. It has the option to extend for three years beyond the initial five to 31 December 2026.

Smit Lamnalco has been providing harbour towage services at the port since 2011. The company said 11 tugs would be deployed to service both harbour and LNG customers.

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Smit Lamnalco commercial director Frederik Rutgers said the towage provider was looking forward to continuing its partnership with GPC, port stakeholders and the Gladstone community.

“Smit Lamnalco is proud to have again been selected to provide towage services in this unique environment,” he said.

Smit Lamnalco CEO Stanley Maas said: “We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with GPC and its customers. We are pleased that GPC has recognised our ability to provide high quality, efficient and safe towage services to the broad spectrum of port users.”

GPC chairman Peter Corones said Smit Lamnalco is the incumbent harbour towage provider, with a proven track record of safely handling vessels within the port.

“Smit Lamnalco was identified as the preferred tenderer and we are confident they will continue to provide a safe, efficient and effective service,” he said.

“Smit Lamnalco’s experience in operating in the Port of Gladstone’s unique environment, partnered with its ability to provide a strategic approach to towage activities, will ensure the licence benefits all port users.”

The process was overseen by independent probity advisors.

“GPC developed a detailed strategy consistent with the state’s Queensland Procurement Policy and the exclusive dealing notification submitted to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission,” Mr Corones said.

“It was designed to ensure public benefits, such as lower costs and efficiencies for port users, which we are confident will be achieved through the award of the exclusive licence.”

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