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Mayor of Port Antonio, Councillor Rupert Kelly, has said that the Portland Parish Council will be lobbying for the early resumption of banana exports from the Boundbrook wharf.
The shipment of bananas from the facility ended in December after a decision by the Banana Export Company (BECo) to shift the operation to Kingston, with the Boundbrook wharf now only responsible for storage.
Councillor Kelly said the banana trade was important to the economy of Portland and the welfare of workers, and the Council would be lobbying for the resumption of exports as part of the programme of development for the parish during the course of this year.
He noted also, that the Council would be examining the possibility of expanding operations at the wharf to make it into the vibrant multi-faceted commercial port it has the potential to become.
According to Councillor Kelly, the initiative would involve partnership with tourism-related entities to improve the parish’s appeal as a tourist and cruise ship destination, and the Council would be seeking the support of local and international investors to promote economic and social development.
Other initiatives to be given priority by the Council during the course of this year, include lobbying for the development of the Ken Jones Aerodrome in St. Margaret’s Bay; commencement of works on the proposed Dragon Bay Hotel, and making representations for the widening of the channel leading to the Ken Wright pier to facilitate calls by large cruise liners.