M/V New Explorer, a Liberian registered vessel sailing from Egypt, was the first ship to arrive in Sept-Îles this year at 8 a.m. on January 5, 2018. The vessel arrived in ballast and set sail again on January 6, 2018 with 77,000 tons of iron ore from IOC Rio Tinto destined for Ghent, Belgium.

During a short ceremony, Pierre D. Gagnon (right), President & CEO of Sept-Îles Port Authority presented Captain Ioannis Kantounias with the prestigious cane bearing the Port of Sept-Îles insignia. In addition, several gifts were offered to the Captain by Jean Masse, Deputy Mayor of Sept-Îles, as well as by Benoit Méthot, General Manager, Rail & Port of IOC Rio Tinto.

This tradition, now in its 31st year, marks the arrival of the first ship of the year to call the port. To be eligible, the vessel must come directly from a foreign port and be bound for a destination outside the country without making any other calls at a Canadian port.