Canpotex increasing capacity for the future
To meet the growing global demand for food, three Canadian potash producers are each undertaking expansion programs that are valued at nearly $12 billion. This increase represents the industry’s largest expansion in Saskatchewan in 30 years. The three producers are Agrium, Mosaic and PotashCorp, which make up Canpotex.
“We’re set on an ambitious expansion program to support our shareholders and their increased exports. We’re going to have to do more of what we do well,” Steve Dechka, Canpotex president and CEO, told the Leader Post.
Part of Canpotex’s expansion includes newly signed 10-year agreements with both CP Rail and CN Rail. These agreements help secure the needed transportation for increasing export volumes, which are anticipated in the next decade.
Over the past few years, significant investment has been made to enhance Canpotex’s terminal capabilities. In 2011, Canpotex invested approximately $50 million to upgrade its Neptune Terminal in Vancouver, the Leader Post reports. It was reported that the terminal’s rail, conveyor and material handling systems were enhanced, boosting throughput capacity to nearly 12 million metric tons.
In addition, the Portland terminal was expanded in 2007 for approximately $14 million, which helped to increase storage capacity.
“We are also looking at building a new greenfield terminal on the west coast at Prince Rupert, B.C., which is expected to cost $700 million. This would give us three separate gateways and three separate rail lines to the west coast,” Dechka was reported as saying.