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Lyttelton Port Expects to Resume Imports Tomorrow After Quake

Feb. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Lyttelton Port of Christchurch, New Zealand’s largest coal-exporting hub, expects to resume unloading vessels tomorrow after port infrastructure was damaged in this week’s earthquake.

“Fuel and essential supplies are expected to start flowing through the port from Saturday,” the company said in a statement dated yesterday and released today to New Zealand’s stock exchange.

Exports of products including wool and dairy products may resume from the port in two to three weeks, Chief Executive Officer Peter Davie said yesterday. A ship with emergency vehicles and water supplies will arrive tomorrow and general supplies will arrive Feb. 27, the company said. The port’s oil berth is undergoing final damage assessment today, it said.

Rescuers have recovered 103 bodies following the 6.3-magnitude temblor that struck Christchurch on Feb. 22, and say that figure is likely to rise. New Zealand is the world’s largest dairy exporter and produces about 40 percent of the supply of heavy-grade crossbred wool used in carpets.

The port had earlier suffered damage to its wharves, cranes and other facilities when a magnitude-7.0 earthquake struck the region on Sept. 4

To contact the reporter for this story: Phoebe Sedgman in Wellington at psedgman2@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Poole at jpoole4@bloomberg.net.

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