Container cargo drop at the Freeport of Riga is the least
One of the priorities of the Freeport of Riga Authority for 2015 is the activity “Dredging of access channel for vessels entering Riga port”, FRA says. Due to the continuous dredging of the riverbed of Daugava, which started in 2008, the port has been implementing the opportunity to serve larger vessels.
During 10 months of 2015 the port handled an average of 3027 vessels, most of them being dry cargo vessels - 1303, 640 tankers, 475 container ships and 333 bulk carriers. In general, the breakdown of ships’ visits to the port as per specific months of the year is rather balanced, but the largest number of serviced vessels was registered in May and September, when 317 and 316 commercial vessels, respectively, called the port.
Within 10 months of the current year 33,3 million tons of various cargo were handled at the port. The 10-month turnover of the current year is the second highest volume for the reporting period in the port's history, compared with the results of 2014, which were record-high. In a situation when Russia, which accounts for the majority of cargo comprising the Riga port cargo turnover, continues to increase volume of cargo throughput via its own ports, such figures should be assessed as very positive. Although Russia announced a reduction in the volume of freight carried by rail in the direction of Latvian ports, the Riga Port currently has not experienced a significant cargo volume decline. Geopolitics has affected the volume of containerized cargo this year, it has decreased at the ports of the Eastern coast of the Baltic Sea - the introduction of economic sanctions of the European Union and Russia has had an impact on the flow of commodities, that make up the bulk of the containerized cargo volume. However, it should be noted that in comparison with the rest of the region's ports the containerized cargo volume decrease is the smallest at the Freeport of Riga.
Due to the JSC “Tallink Latvija” decision on relocation of the ferry Romantika to another port, only one vessel Isabelle is serving Riga-Stockholm line in 2015. Consequently, number of Tallink line passengers has decreased this year. During 10 months of 2015 the number of cruise ships, serviced at the port, grew (+ 6 ships), while the average size of cruise ship tends to increase (+13,6%) as well as the number of passengers, which increased by 13,7% compared to 10 months of the previous year. In October the cruise season concluded with the visit of the vessel AIDA Cara. Overall, the last season at the port was a very positive one. The port accommodated 67,7 thousand. passengers (+13,7%).
In 2015 small luxury ships and expedition cruise vessels returned to the port of Riga. It should be noted that one such expedition vessel Corinthian called Riga 5 times and remained more than 24 hours at the port during every call, confirming the quality of services and security, provided by the port of Riga.