As the 2022 Great Lakes shipping season gets underway, Hamilton and Oshawa’s ports are primed for another strong year. HOPA Ports saw a total of 11.2mt (million metric tonnes) of cargo during the 2021 shipping season, up 9% from the same time period the previous year.
Hamilton Port recorded 10.8mt this past season; surpassing 2020’s total by almost 1mt of cargo, and climbing 6% ahead of its five-year average. Though its dry bulk levels remained steady, Hamilton continues to see a steady rise in the growth of agriculture-related commodities; driven by increases in wheat, corn, crop inputs, and a whopping 91% increase in raw sugar for SucroCan sugar refinery at the port. Hamilton’s total grain cargo in 2021 once again exceeded 2.5mt, and agricultural cargoes make up one third of its total tonnages. Hamilton also saw significant gains in sand and quartz for the construction sector.
In 2021 HOPA and Hamilton Container Terminal launched a dedicated container feeder service with sailings between Hamilton and Montreal. HOPA also announced its expansion into Niagara Region with a growing Niagara Ports portfolio, centred on the Thorold Multimodal Hub located along the Welland Canal.
HOPA Ports will have $30 million in capital projects under way in 2022, spread across its Southern Ontario port network. In Oshawa, HOPA will be upgrading the port’s facilities and infrastructure to increase capacity for agricultural cargoes and the port’s allowable draught. Oshawa’s port is a key gateway to the most densely populated area of Southern Ontario and international markets through the St Lawrence Seaway.”
In Hamilton, HOPA’s engineering and design team will have many projects on the go; however, one key area of focus will be to create a dedicated agri-food cluster at Pier 10. By adding new storage space for sugar and grain and marine infrastructure, HOPA will provide 225,000 metric tonnes of additional capacity per year, while also taking thousands of trucks off the road.
“The demand for Canadian-grown grain, corn, wheat and soybeans continues, both domestically and around the world. By raising the bar and continuing to invest in critical and sustainable infrastructure, we are enabling growth in Canada’s capacity and trade potential,” said Ian Hamilton, President & CEO of HOPA Ports. “We look forward to even better outcomes in 2022.”