Port Authority of New South Wales Appoints New CEO

Captain Philip Holliday
Captain Philip Holliday

Published Dec 2, 2019 7:36 PM by The Maritime Executive

Chair of Port Authority of New South Wales Robert Dunn has announced the appointment of Sydney Harbour Master Captain Philip Holliday as the organization’s new CEO and Director effective immediately.

As CEO and Director Holliday will lead the Australian port authority in managing the navigation, security and operational safety needs of commercial trade and cruise shipping in Sydney Harbour, Port Botany, Newcastle Harbour, Port Kembla, Eden and Yamba.

Holliday joined the port authority in 2011 and has been fulfilling the role of acting CEO following an announcement in September that Grant Gilfillan would step down after 12 years as the organization’s head.

Beginning his maritime career as a 16-year-old cadet with Ropner Shipping Services, Holliday moved on to Souter Shipping where he gained his Class 1 (FGN) Masters certificate. In 1998, Holliday joined Associated British Ports (ABP), the U.K.'s largest port operator, in a port operations role, becoming the Harbour Master for the ABP Port of Southampton and Marine Advisor for the group's 21 U.K. ports.

On moving from the U.K. to Australia, Holliday became chair of Ports Australia's Port Operations Working Group and took a lead role in the development of the Australian Port Marine Safety Management Guidelines.

Holliday takes the role at a time when a business case is being developed for the location of a third cruise terminal in Sydney. The case is being developed to investigate cruise capacity, industry demand and assess two potential cruise terminal sites at Yarra Bay and Molineux Point near Port Botany. The project is being led by the Port Authority in consultation with the NSW Treasury.

New South Wales remains the state with the largest economic benefits from the cruise industry. The 358 ship visits to six of NSW’s ports generated a total expenditure of $3.3 billion. NSW also received the greatest share of direct expenditure from the cruise industry, receiving $1.55 billion including $1.54 billion from Sydney alone.

While regional port calls are increasingly becoming an addition to international cruise itineraries, these calls to locations such as Port Kembla (in Wollongong) and Newcastle are a complement to and not considered a substitute for a Sydney port call for most vessels, therefore they are not being considered for the new terminal.