Annual meeting of the Montreal Port Authority
Positive results from 2021 operations: a year of resilience and agility
Montreal, May 2, 2022 — This morning, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA) Martin Imbleau and Chairman of the Board Marie-Claude Boisvert presented the Port of Montreal’s 2021 operating results at the annual meeting. The meeting was held in hybrid format at the MPA head office.
Despite the challenges and crises that marked the year 2021, including a labour dispute, the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, fires in Western Canada and disruptions in global supply chains, the MPA posted positive results. Numerous infrastructure projects, higher container volumes, no port congestion, fewer emissions of greenhouse gases, and the MPA’s sound financial position are among the key accomplishments.
“The past year tells us one thing, and that is how necessary it is to be able to adapt, no matter what the circumstances, to disruptions, unforeseen events and factors outside the normal course of operations that can affect the supply chain. As a public service, we are doing everything we can to ensure the future of the Port of Montreal. We do this for local businesses that import and export products that are indispensable to their operations and vitality and, bottom line, we do this for the ultimate client, namely the consumer, the citizen,” said Martin Imbleau, President and Chief Executive Officer of the MPA.
Freight volumes were impacted by the events of the year in several ways.
The container sector, driven by changing consumer habits in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the surge in orders for consumer products, posted a 7.5% increase in TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units), with 1.7 million containers handled.
The dry bulk sector declined 6.2% to 7.9 million tonnes due to droughts in Western Canada that affected grain volumes. Conversely, there was strong growth in the volumes of minerals and fertilizers for the agri-food sector.
The liquid bulk sector posted a 5.2% decrease to 11.7 million tonnes, mainly due to the impact of the pandemic on fuel volumes for personal vehicles and air traffic.
In all, 34 million tonnes of cargo were handled at the Port of Montreal, down 3% from last year.
The entire 2021 cruise season was cancelled for a second consecutive year in accordance with Transport Canada guidelines.
Financial results and infrastructure projects
Revenue from operations remained stable. It was $117.7 million in 2021, compared to $116.6 million in 2020.
Expenses came to $104 million.
Capital investments for 2021 totaled $111 million. It is also noteworthy that the MPA completed the issuance of $150 million of unsecured debentures bearing interest at 3.24% with principal due at maturity on March 22, 2051.
Factoring in investment income, net income was $19.7 million.
Several major infrastructure projects passed key milestones over the course of 2021. These include the Contrecœur expansion project, which received a favourable decision from the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Canada, the rail capacity expansion project, the first phase of which was completed, the redevelopment of Bickerdike Terminal, which was completed after two years of project works, the Viau sector overpass, which was launched, and the Port of Montreal Tower, the last major step in the extensive Alexandra Pier rehabilitation project begun in 2014.
These projects aim to further improve the long-term performance and efficiency of the Port of Montreal’s supply chain and facilities, as well as the quality of its services with a focus on sustainability and social responsibility.
The MPA’s sustainability achievements, set out in detail in the 2021 Sustainability Report, are multi-faceted. The year 2021 was marked by the creation of major partnerships to develop lower-carbon fuels and the move towards decarbonizing Port activities, as well as by several promising projects developed to protect biodiversity, improve air and water quality, and by implementing tangible solutions to support the community.
The 33% drop in GHGs emitted by MPA operations since 2007, our 43 shore power connections for wintering and cruise ships, the rollout of the CargO2ai logistics tool designed to accelerate the processing of critical goods in a fragile health context, and the planting of 1,236 trees near Port facilities are just a few examples of our activities.
Anchored in the future
The year 2022 got underway with strategic planning and collaborative efforts across the board with all stakeholders, citizens, partners and players in international shipping. A major participatory process was initiated to contribute to the strategic reflection underway on the themes of the environment, society, the economy and innovation. The MPA’s commitment to decarbonize its activities by 2050 and its recent membership in the United Nations Global Compact are part of an ambitious vision of the future that puts energy transition at the core of its priorities. Furthermore, the recent partnership with CN to develop the rail network in Contrecoeur meets the stated objective of designing and building a new terminal with optimal operational performance.
The 2021 annual report and sustainability report of the MPA can be consulted at: www.port-montreal.com/m/rapport-annuel/2021/en
About the Port of Montreal
Operated by the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), the Port of Montreal is the second largest port in Canada and a diversified transshipment centre that handles all types of goods: containerized and non-containerized cargo, liquid bulk and dry bulk. The only container port in Quebec, it is a destination port served by the largest shipping lines in the world. It is also an intermodal hub with a service offering that is unique in North America, featuring its own rail network directly dockside connected to Canada’s two national rail networks. The MPA also operates a Cruise Terminal and a Port Centre.
The MPA factors economic, social and environmental components into its corporate initiatives. This commitment is governed by a sustainable development policy whose guiding principles focus on involvement, cooperation and accountability. Port activity supports 19,000 jobs and generates $2.6 billion in economic benefits annually.
— 30 —