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Jul 26, 2021

Port of Belize Limited C.E.O. Discusses Revenue Challenges

Andy Lane

The Port of Belize Limited is slowly bouncing back after taking a major hit to its bottom line in 2020 at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Sugar exports were down and cruise ships stopped coming to Belize.  This led the Port of Belize to terminate a significant portion of its staff in order to keep the company afloat.  Chief Executive Officer at the Port of Belize, Andy Lane was a guest on Channel Five’s Open Your Eyes this morning.


Andy Lane, C.E.O., Port of Belize Limited

“With the decrease in tourist, and the lockdowns, slowdowns in the economy then in 2020 we lost one fifth of our container volumes. At the same time, our sugar exports declined by fifty percent. And then, suddenly the cruise ships stopped in totally. So that was a ninety, I think statistically, a nine four or ninety seven percent loss that we had in 2020. 2021, we have seen a little bit of recovery. But, my volume and therefore my revenue was still thirteen percent below 2019. We have one cruise ship a week, instead of two or three per day. And my sugar is very low; it is still fifty percent of 2019. So, we have had a pretty huge hit to our revenue stream. And, that has caused a major problem to our bottom line, and we need to manage that the best we possibly can.”


Isani Cayetano

“How do you go about systematically addressing each one of these issues?”

Andy Lane

“Our revenue stream is not something we have direct control over. Another thing to remember is that we work with a tariff which dates back to the early 1980s. So there has been no increase in unit revenues in nearly forty years, since the port began. So without the unit revenues increasing and we can’t just push up the unit revenues either because that just makes the price for consumers for imported goods more expensive. It makes Belizean exports less attractive in the world. So the only thing we can really focus on is our costs. And, our cost is king, right? So we have to make every effort we can. So in 2020, we unfortunately had to say good bye to thirty-four staff.   And that hurt a lot. It hurt the people. It hurt the company. It hurt the remaining employees. But it is a situation we were essentially forced into. We have to make sure the business is sustainable.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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