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'Unnecessary' investment agreed for Faro docks

ship3“Redevelopment works are not necessary for expansion" at Faro docks, according to comments from José Pedro Soares from the Sines and Algarve Port Authority on August 13.

The very next day the same Port Authority signed an agreement to invest €3.2 million on dredging at Faro docks which it had just claimed was not necessary.

The agreement between the body that oversees the Ria Formosa, and the Ports Authority was signed to allow the investment to go ahead as part of the Algarve’s share of the government’s national long term investment project in the nation's infrastructure.

On taking the reins, Economy Minister Pires de Lima promised urgent money for dredging and upgrading Faro docks and was later faced with the authority actually running the business claiming that dredging is an unnecessary expenditure.

"For now, the port is the right length. What we do need is to upgrade some equipment and fix the dockside surface to facilitate operations," said Soares earlier this month, adding that these small improvements should be resolved within a year.

Still no news on any money for equipment and surfacing which does need investment, but the powers that be are pressing ahead to fund improvements to the sand bars, channels, and the area in front of the quays which it claims are not necessary.

In 2013, the port in Faro handled 358,000 tonnes of product carried by 82 ships, with salt, cement, carobs and tuna all going to overseas markets. Dredging will enable more and larger ships to load and unload but the Algarve's Port Authority run from Sines is not interested in expansion in the Algarve, the centre of its world is in Sines on the west coast.

There is no news yet on development of the cruising facilities and dredging at Portimão docks where progress is being held up by the meticulous crafting of interminable engineering and hydrographic reports. In the meantime the bigger cruise ships sail on by to the detriment of the bankrupt city.

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