Port of Rotterdam box volumes rise 3.8pc from January to September
THE Port of Rotterdam handled 112.4 million tonnes of cargo during the third quarter, bringing total transshipment volumes in the first nine months of the year to 353.5 million tonnes, representing a year-on-year increase of one per cent.
Volume growth was mainly driven by containers, crude oil, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and biomass. There was a reduction in the transshipment of coal and mineral oil products, a statement from port authorities said.
"In the third quarter we again saw healthy growth in terms of containers, one of the port authority's strategic spearheads," said Port of Rotterdam Authority CEO Allard Castelein. "What is worrying, however, is that the relationship between the world's major trading blocs remains strained, as does the continuing uncertainty about the introduction of trade tariffs after Brexit."
In the first nine months of the year container transshipment volumes rose by 3.3 per cent year on year in tonnage terms and were up 3.8 per cent measured by TEU volume. This growth mainly took place during the first half of the year, levelling off in the third quarter. This was caused by an overall slowdown in the growth of global trade and a decline in short sea freight volumes being shipped to the eastern Mediterranean.
A total of 55.9 million tonnes of dry bulk was transhipped in the first three quarters of the year, down 1.4 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Iron ore transshipment volumes rose by two per cent through to the end of the third quarter. This growth mainly took place during the first six months of the year. The faltering economy in Germany has led to less transshipment in recent months. Steel companies were hesitant about replenishing stocks due to the downturn in car production.
Transshipment of energy coal fell sharply after a strong start in 2019, caused by the low price of coal at the time. This downturn was due to the sharply declining share of coal and lignite in German power generation and due to maintenance work at the Maasvlakte power stations.