A £100,000 investment by Associated British Ports (ABP) will enable WestBank Timber Ltd to continue the expansion of its timber-handling operations at the Port of Newport this year.

The port’s Transit Shed Number 4 will undergo a revamp, with redundant internal structures removed, new lighting and fencing installed, and the surface drainage improved.

This refurbishment coincides with an increase in the geographical spread of WestBank timber’s distribution facilities across the UK.

To complement ABP’s refurbishment of the shed, WestBank Timber will undertake significant capital investments to facilitate its expansion at the port.

The company began importing timber into Newport in early 2003 to meet customer requirements in Wales and the south-west.

In 2004, the company signed a 10-year agreement with ABP which saw ABP invest £300,000 to relocate WestBank timber’s offices, extend its storage compound and resurface the land surrounding its facilities.

John Fitzgerald, port director for ABP’s South Wales Ports, said: “For the past seven years, ABP has worked closely together with WestBank Timber to develop their timber-importing business. With ABP’s new investment, WestBank timber is now able to grow to its full potential and ABP is glad to support its new endeavour.”

WestBank Timber managing director Brian Griffiths said the joint investments would enable the company to improve the levels of service it could offer in Wales and the south-west and added: “We look forward to growing our business through Newport in coming years.”