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Investments will help boost operations at the Port of Rotterdam

Published by , Editor - Hydrocarbon Engineering
Tanks and Terminals,

In October last year, Esso Nederland B.V. announced it would invest more than US$1 billion in its Rotterdam refinery. This was a clear expression of confidence in the Rotterdam operations. Allard Castelein referred to the announcement as good news for ExxonMobil, as well as for the port.

The decision to invest in Rotterdam was made as the facility offers major benefits due its depth, access to sales markets in the Benelux and Germany, and due to the integration between various industries. As a result, it is possible for it to procure services more efficiently, as well as offer many logistics benefits.

The Port Authority and companies within the port work hard to stay competitive, using environmentally aware methods. This requires the right balance between investments and cost control – investments to support new activities and to continue to develop the port’s infrastructure and cost control in order to keep the port attractive to existing companies. For a refinery, the playing field is international, and the predictable and moderate evolution of costs is of major importance in order to stay competitive.

The government plays a key role in the port’s investment climate. Legislation in the Netherlands is far more stringent in certain areas than in surrounding countries. However, there must be a level playing field. This is, for example, currently the case in terms of the directives concerning the storage of hazardous substances (PGS29), the rules for exposure to hazardous substances and the standards for NOX emissions. The rules that are currently being proposed will not result in a higher level of safety or better health for the public or the environment, but they do create additional costs that affect the competitive position of the companies in the port. In the company’s view, this cannot possibly be the desired way forward.

Companies and governments must ensure that the Port of Rotterdam stays attractive to industry, so that the port will continue to attract investments.

Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling

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