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Port of Sept-Îles receives the St. Lawrence award

SEPT-ÎLES, October 27, 2010 – As part of Quebec Marine Day, the Port of Sept-Îles was named winner of the St. Lawrence Award from the St. Lawrence Economic Development Council (SODES) during an event held in the National Assembly in the company of elected officials and marine industry representatives.

The St. Lawrence Award is given annually to recognize exceptional results and projects that have contributed to the economic development or enhancement of the St. Lawrence River while respecting sustainable development principles.

The Port of Sept-Îles received the award for its overall achievements in the past year. Thanks to the federal government’s economic stimulus program and the provincial-federal St. Lawrence cruise industry development program, the Port realized more than $85 million in capital activities, allowing expansion of the Pointe-Noire and La Relance port terminals and construction of a new cruise ship dock. These activities have also generated significant spinoffs, with more than a quarter billion dollars invested when the private sector is included and the creation of many jobs and major contracts for the St. Lawrence and North Shore maritime business community.

In particular, these investments will make it possible to triple business volume at the Pointe-Noire terminal, optimize the La Relance terminal (the biggest aluminum industry terminal in the Americas), and develop the area as a new cruise ship stopover on the St. Lawrence River.

The Port will also welcome the arrival of three new iron industry partners with the signing of agreements for new business volumes equivalent to 15 million tons a year.

“This prestigious honor from the maritime industry, combined with the AQTR Transportation Excellence Award received in May, tops off a truly exceptional year for the Port of Sept-Îles. These successes and accomplishments were made possible, above all, thanks to the close collaboration between the Port of Sept-Îles and its partners! We are very pleased to receive this recognition and share it with all our partners, since the award highlights the Port’s and its users’ valuable contribution to wealth creation on the St. Lawrence River,” said Mr. Gagnon and Mr. Soucy, respectively Port of Sept-Îles president and CEO and chairman of the board.

Boasting a variety of state-of-the-art facilities, the Port of Sept-Îles is one of North America’s leading iron ore ports and in 2011 will become Canada’s second largest in terms of expected annual volume handled, with over 35 million tons. Sept-Îles’ port facilities play a vital and strategic role in the operation of a number of businesses from the region’s primary sector. The Port’s annual economic impact is estimated at nearly $1 billion, with some 4,000 direct and indirect jobs. Port activity at the Port of Sept-Îles therefore remains a significant source of wealth creation in Quebec and Canada.

The St. Lawrence Economic Development Council (SODES) is a nonprofit organization tasked with representing and promoting the economic interests of the St. Lawrence marine industry while respecting the key principles of sustainable development. Its members, who represent all segments of the maritime community, include ship owners, ports, maritime transport shippers-users, stevedoring companies, marine terminals, pilot corporations, port cities, and many others. SODES acts as a leader and spokesperson for the St. Lawrence maritime community.

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