MONTREAL, QUEBEC, CANADA — The government of Canada will invest nearly C$8 million (US$5.8 million) for DG CanEst Transit Inc. to update existing infrastructure and purchase new equipment for its facilities located in the Port of Montreal through the National Trade Corridors Fund.

The project, worth a total of C$18 million (US$13 million), will increase the number of containers stored onsite, improve the quality of the grain-cleaning service, optimize traffic flow in the yard, and increase capacity for loading and handling containers. This will ensure critical Canadian goods, such as grain and other agricultural products, can continue to be shipped reliably for import and export.

“The quality of our transportation infrastructure and the efficiency of our trade corridors are crucial to Canada’s economic success,” said Omar Alghabra, minister of Transport, who announced the funding on Oct. 12 with Annie Koutrakis, parliamentary secretary to the minister of Transport. “Our government’s investment in DG CanEst Transit Inc.’s facilities will help ensure that the supply chains here in Quebec and throughout our country remain efficient and reliable.”

On Oct. 6, the Supply Chain Task Force submitted its final report to Alghabra containing recommendations for mitigating short-term challenges and long-term strategic issues confronting Canada’s supply chain. One of the issues identified by the task force is the high volume of containers arriving at Canadian ports that have clogged the transportation supply chain due to insufficient warehousing and reduced transloading capacity. 

The Port of Montreal, eastern Canada’s largest port, has 23 terminals with more than 100 kilometers of railroad track. It handles 2,000 vessels annually, 60 to 80 trains per week and up to 2,500 trucks per day. In 2021, the port handled 935,221 tonnes of inbound grains and 1.42 million tonnes of outbound grains by ship. Grains moved by rail and truck were 636,573 tonnes inbound and 77,301 tonnes outbound.

“The entire world looks to Canada to support food security around the globe,” said Marie-Claude Bibeau, minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “Port infrastructure is critical for the continuous flow of commercial trade and our government will continue to support initiatives like CanEst Transit as they help with the export of Canadian agricultural products.” 

The National Trade Corridors Fund is a competitive, merit-based program designed to help infrastructure owners and users invest in the critical transportation assets that support economic activity in Canada. The national budget in 2022 provided C$450 million over five years, starting in 2022-23, to support supply chain projects through the fund, bringing the program’s total allocation to C$4.6 billion over 11 years (2017-2028).