Logs rolling in, and out, sign of positive restart
A positive restart to forest exports has been signalled here with the quantity of logs going into Eastland Port climbing quickly and seven log ships booked to load here.
The forestry sector in Tairawhiti began work again on Tuesday and the port had dispensation to load logs during the latter part of Alert Level 4.
The first log ship to load here since before lockdown started sailed last week.
Eastland Port chief operating officer Andrew Gaddum said the port had around 110,000 tonnes of logs in storage before the imposition of the Level 4 lockdown.
“We have shipped about 50,000 tonnes so far for April, and the cart-in rates to the port are coming up each day,” Mr Gaddum said.
“On Tuesday the port received 6700 tonnes and on Wednesday 11,100 tonnes.”
He said the restart to the forestry supply chain has got off to a positive start.
“Logs have started coming in from the bush, and we have brought a huge number in from our Dunstan Road storage area to keep port storage turning over nicely.
“It's been a team effort to restart the local forestry industry and it's been great to see everyone working together to do it efficiently and safely.”
The log ship Erradale continues to load cargo alongside the wharf today, with two other ships out in Turanganui-a-Kiwa/Poverty Bay.
The Erradale should complete loading and sail tomorrow, to be followed by the loggers Port Botany, Yangtze Eternal, Funing and Clearwater Bay over the next week to 10 days.
The Baltic Sea is due to arrive on May 11, and the Port Alfred on May 15, both for logs.