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Prime minister Stephen Harper inaugurates silo no. 8 and announces the second phase of the Port of Sept-Îles’ Relance Terminal expansion

SEPT-ÎLES, September 13, 2010 – The Port of Sept-Îles is proud to announce today that prime minister of Canada Stephen Harper is here to launch the second phase of the project to increase the Relance Terminal’s capacity. The terminal’s main client is Aluminerie Alouette. A grant of $7 million or 50% of project costs has been awarded through the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund for the rehabilitation or construction of infrastructure. This announcement took place during a ceremony to mark the inauguration of the large concrete silo number 8, part of the initial $30 million project. The Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of State for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, was also present, as were Aluminerie Alouette representatives and other dignitaries from the Sept-Îles region.

Phase 2 of the project to increase La Relance Terminal’s capacity represents a total investment of $14 million. The money will go into optimizing the largest aluminum industry port terminal in the Americas. The project principally involves the construction of a logistical center for aluminum management, improvements to docking systems, an increase in electrical capacity, and the establishment of a new service building for terminal security.

These investments will accommodate the growing needs of terminal users, particularly Aluminerie Alouette. For the company, the completion of this second optimization phase ensures it can remain competitive and protect its international position as it tackles future challenges.

The first phase of the expansion, announced in September 2009, represented a total investment of $30 million, half of which came from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund. An additional petroleum coke silo was built along with its materials distribution center, and the capacity of loading equipment was increased.

“Government assistance for the second phase of investment in this, the largest aluminum terminal in the Americas, will allow the Port of Sept-Îles to fully assume its role as a catalyst for development,” declared Pierre D. Gagnon, Port of Sept-Îles president and CEO. “It now has the necessary infrastructure to handle the growth of a world leader like Aluminerie Alouette.”

“In the last year, the federal government has supported future development of the Port of Sept-Îles by contributing to the implementation of four of the most important projects for our industries through its Economic Stimulus Fund,” added Carol Soucy, chair of the board. “That’s over $63 million for projects critical to our regional and national economy. On behalf of the port and regional communities, I’d like to thank the federal government for its support in meeting the needs of this flourishing region.”

With a full range of high-performance equipment, the Port of Sept-Îles is North America’s leading iron ore port and will now become Canada’s second largest in terms of annual volume handled at over 35 million tons.

Sept-Îles’s 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 is therefore a significant source of wealth creation in Quebec and for all of Canada.

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