Port sees up to 20 percent drop in volume

Port sees up to 20 percent drop in volume

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Nassau’s main commercial shipping port has seen throughput volumes drop by about 20 percent amid the COVID-19 pandemic, its chief executive officer told Eyewitness News yesterday.

Dion Bethell, president and chief executive officer of the BISX-listed Arawak Port Development (APD) company, said: “We are doing during the COVID period about 15-20 per cent below what our volumes were during the same period last year.

“We have seen some bulk stuff come in but when there is no ongoing construction related to the water theme park for Baha Mar. We saw some material for the Wynn project opposite the Office of the Prime Minister. Despite all of that we still see volumes below the pre-COVID levels and below the prior year for the same period.”

Bethell noted that there has been an ‘uptick’ in the importation of lumber, building materials and general store merchandise which were down in April and May.

He continued: “We started to see as things started to reopen and their existing inventory would have died down that they are now bringing those items back in. Our car volumes seem to be relatively steady even though they are below the previous year’s volumes.

“We still have vehicles coming in. For the perishable or food store related items they have remained below pre-COVID volumes primarily because Baha Mar has indicated that they will delay  their reopening as well as Atlantis, Sandals and the bigger properties.”

He added: “We have seen some volumes related to The Pointe- fixtures, fittings and equipment for that property. We have seen some volumes come in related to the US Embassy and then we had some cargo related to BPL that we had not forecast but came in during this period as well.”