Minister for Ports Denis Napthine welcomed a new chairman and a new board member to the Port of Melbourne Corporation.
Dr Napthine said the new chairman Mr Mark Birrell and board member Ms Janice van Reyk, along with the existing board, would be tasked with continuing to build upon the solid foundation left by retiring chairman Bill Scales AO.
“I am pleased to appoint Mark Birrell as the new chairman. Mr Birrell has a strong legal and public policy background to go with his extensive experience on a wide range of boards,” Dr Napthine said.
“Mr Birrell was appointed by the federal Labor Government to the statutory board of Infrastructure Australia in 2008 and re-appointed for a further term in 2011. He has also been the chairman of Infrastructure Partnerships Australia since 2005.
“Mr Birrell was also appointed as an independent chairman of a Vicroads consultative review by former Premier Steve Bracks in 2003.”
“Mr Birrell is currently the Deputy President of VECCI and was appointed as Deputy Chairman of Australia Post from 2003 – 2010 by former Prime Minister John Howard.
“Mr Birrell has extensive public policy experience and worked on various ministerial portfolios including Major Projects, Conservation and Environment, and Industry, Science and Technology. Mr Birrell was also Upper House Leader in the Victorian Government,” Dr Napthine said.
Dr Napthine said Janice van Reyk would also bring a wealth of knowledge from her legal and commercial background where she was general counsel and company secretary for various major Australian companies.
“Ms van Reyk was appointed by the previous Victorian Government as a non-executive director for Gippsland Water in 2007 and to Citywide in 2010. She is also a chairman of various board sub-committees,” Dr Napthine said.
“I am confident these new appointments will provide the organisational leadership required to maintain the Port of Melbourne as Australia’s largest container and general cargo port.
“We have the busiest and most prosperous port in Australia, and so it is important the Port of Melbourne is equipped to face the challenges of future container growth. Effective management of the port is critical for the Victorian economy and the future of our thriving freight industry
“I would like to thank the previous chair Bill Scales AO and previous director Ms Paula Benson for their hard work and service throughout their time with the Port of Melbourne Corporation.”
Port of Melbourne is Australia’s largest container and general cargo port, handling around 37 per cent of the nation’s container trade. More than 40 shipping lines make around 3,300 ship calls a year to Melbourne, providing services to ports in all major parts of the world. Last year almost 2.4 million containers moved through the port, an average of 6,500 containers a day.
Source: Port of Melbourne, October 26, 2011