Transport Minister Dean Nalder has announced that Fremantle Ports will go to market for the leasing of its container terminals on North Quay for undisclosed sums.
Mr Nalder said the leases were set to expire in 2017.
“This trade is of enormous importance to the state,” he said.
“The container stevedoring business has changed significantly since the 21-year leases were granted in 1996.”
“It’s now timely to build some key strategic objectives into the new leasing arrangements to enhance efficiency in servicing the container trade.”
The Port of Fremantle is the state’s primary container, general cargo and automotive port, managing 92 per cent of the state’s container trade.
It is Australia’s fourth largest container port, accounting for 9.4 per cent of the national share of container trade.
It handled 703,000 standard containers in 2013-14 from 502 ships.
“The state government is committed to maintaining Fremantle Port’s role in servicing Western Australia’s container trade,” Mr Nalder said.
He said the current expressions of interest process would be followed by a request for proposals.
An operating agreement will then be put in place to manage the performance of successful bidders.