Why is the Nanaimo Port Authority, a local port corporation, giving up on the Nanaimo boat basin?
Demise of the National Harbours Board
Before Port Authorities came into being in Canada, each port was under the federal jurisdiction of the National Harbours Board. In 1981, the federal government scrapped the National Harbours Board and created the Canada Ports Corporation. Each former NHB (National Harbours Board) port became a Local Port Corporation (LPC).
The ports continued to be eligible for financial support from government. The LPCs were, however, declared to be Schedule D corporations, which made it possible for them to borrow from private financial institutions as well as receive a federal budget from Transport Canada.
|Financially self-sufficient; part of the network of 40 ports accounting for 80% of Canada’s
marine traffic; serve a large market area; links to major land transport infrastructure
|8 mandatory ports: Fraser River,
Halifax, Montreal, Prince
Rupert, Quebec City, Saint John,
St. John’s, and Vancouver
|Can apply for CPA status (must be financially self-sufficient in this case) or be transferred to provincial governments,
municipal authorities, community
organizations, or private interests
|Nanaimo, Goose Bay, Canso, Belledune, Rivière-du-Loup, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Churchill,
(and numerous others)
|Isolated communities, reliant on marine transportation and a government wharf, would remain with the Federal Government
|60 ports listed in the NMP
Remote ports are run by harbour commissions made up of volunteer groups.
There used to be 19 federally governed ports and now there are 17 (not including remote ports).
As a corporation, the Nanaimo Port Authority can divest control of its assets, which is what it is essentially doing with the 30 year lease to the McCaw controlled Pacific Northwest Marina Group. PNMG is made up of Marker Group and Marinaco Holdings ULC.
Nanaimo Port Authority in Trouble?
After spending nearly 22 million dollars on the new cruise ship dock in Nanaimo, the Nanaimo Port Authority didn’t see the immediate return on their investment. They were expecting between 25-30 annual cruise ship visits. Instead, only six major cruise ships stopped in Nanaimo in 2011. This year in 2012, five cruise ships stopped in Nanaimo.
Could this be the reason the Nanaimo Port Authority is leasing the port for $9 million dollars for 30 years? Will that be enough to pay the bills?