port of montreal presents Gold-Headed-Cane

Montreal, January 3, 2014 – Montreal Port Authority (MPA) President and CEO Sylvie Vachon officially inaugurated the start of a new year of activity at the Port of Montreal today by presenting the Gold-Headed Cane to Captain Vijayendra Gurukant Chodankar, of India, master of the Federal Spey, the first ocean-going vessel to enter the Port of Montreal without a stopover in 2014. The Federal Spey left the Port of Maceió, in Brazil, on December 14. It crossed the Port of Montreal’s limits on January 1 at 2:00 p.m. Her arrival underlines the fact that the Port of Montreal is open year-round to all ocean-going vessels.

The event also allowed the MPA to recognize the work of Corporation du Saint-Laurent Central pilots Daniel Perron and Michel Lavallée who brought the vessel safely into port.

The MPA held a special celebration this year to mark the 175th Gold-Headed Cane presentation ceremony and the 50th anniversary of year-round navigation on the St. Lawrence River to and from Montreal. The ceremony brought together numerous representatives of the maritime industry and Montreal’s business and cultural communities as well as political figures including Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre.
“This ceremony allows us to thank and pay tribute to all of our partners and the entire maritime transportation industry that participates in and contributes to port activity in Montreal,” Ms. Vachon said.

Registered in the Marshall Islands, the Federal Spey is 190 metres long. Fednav operates the bulk vessel, which entered service in 2012. Fednav is a Canadian company headquartered in Montreal.

The Federal Spey is docked at Berth 46. The terminal is operated by Logistec Stevedoring Inc., another Canadian company headquartered in Montreal. The ship was carrying cargo destined for Lantic Sugar, a company that has been in the eastern part of Montreal since 1888.

A good year for the Port of Montreal

According to preliminary statistics, the Port of Montreal handled some 28.1 million tonnes of cargo in 2013, down slightly from 2012 when total traffic amounted to 28.4 million tonnes. Given that Europe – the port’s main overseas trading partner – is still experiencing an economic slowdown, it is fair to say that 2013 was a good year for the Port of Montreal. The year ended on a very promising note as the port can now accommodate post-Panamax-type vessels. Moreover, the port has also increased its container capacity by 200,000 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units).