Monday, 7 December 2009

Council bids to help fund logistics park

A UK council has applied for financial support for the development of Europe’s largest logistics park, close to the site of the proposed London Gateway container terminal.
DP World London Gateway confirmed that Thurrock Council had responded to a government request for councils to apply for funding for infrastructure projects.
IFW understands Thurrock Council applied for funding because of concerns that the 884,000sq metre logistics park project would not be viable without government intervention, after developer DP World revealed financial concerns.
DP World announced in March that it was putting development of the London Gateway logistics park and container terminal on hold because of volume declines.
A DP World London Gateway spokesman said: "London Gateway [port and logistics park] remains under review.
"We are exploring a variety of funding options, one of which was to explore the possibility of London Gateway Park taking part in the UK government’s open call for pilot Tax Incremental Funding (TIF) projects, announced in the summer.
"Thurrock Council submitted an application in July to the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and we await the outcome of that process."
A spokesman for the DCLG said there was no guarantee that the government would adopt the TIF scheme, as it was still at the consultation stage.
And the DP World spokesman said that even if the government went ahead with the scheme, there had been 124 applications for funds from councils, so Thurrock’s might not be successful.
He also stressed that the application had been made in regard to the development of the logistics park, not the 3.5m teu container terminal, contrary to some reports.
The government is expected to announce this week whether it will go ahead with the funding scheme for accelerated development zones, as TIFs are also known.
DP World received some good news towards the end of last month, when the European Investment Bank announced it would provide up to £300m (US$500m) worth of funding towards the development of the £1.5bn London Gateway terminal.
It has already benefited from €14.1m ($21.2m) from the EU’s Trans-European Transport Network Executive Agency for dredging work.

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