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  • Port of Rotterdam throughput in first three quarters of 2020 falls 8.8% short of last year’s total
  • 2020 October 21 16:41

    Port of Rotterdam throughput in first three quarters of 2020 falls 8.8% short of last year’s total

    The port of Rotterdam handled a total of 103.4 million tonnes of freight in the third quarter of 2020, the company said in its release. Total throughput over the first nine months of the year stands at 322.3 million tonnes. This is 8.8% lower than the volume recorded in the equivalent period last year. The main throughput categories to record a decline in volumes were crude oil, iron ore, coal and mineral oil products. In contrast, the port could report an increase in agribulk volumes, with only a very modest decline in container throughput.

    In comparison with the second quarter of 2020, many segments showed a marked improvement in their throughput volumes. The agribulk, iron ore & scrap, biomass and roll on/roll off categories in particular could report a strong recovery at the end of the third quarter – even to pre-Covid volumes. In addition, there was a clear increase in the number of containers put through the port in Q3 compared to the preceding quarter.

    Allard Castelein, CEO of the Port of Rotterdam Authority: ‘At present, it is still too early to determine whether we have left the worst behind us in economic terms. Nevertheless, I am heartened by the revival of international trade flows and the resilience of our economy – in which the rate of recovery naturally depends to an extent on further developments in the Covid-19 pandemic. Together, the Port of Rotterdam Authority, the Dutch government and companies in our port will be able to give our economy a kick-start by stepping up their joint pace of investment. This will allow us to retain jobs, create new prosperity and help build a more sustainable Netherlands.’

    To recover as quickly as possible from the economic slump while simultaneously improving sustainability in the port, the Port Authority proposes accelerating a number of investment projects. This acceleration of investment projects that are intended to increase sustainable earning power – also known as the Starter Motor project – can create thousands of new structural jobs, contribute billions to the gross domestic product of the Netherlands and substantially cut the volume of carbon emissions released into the atmosphere.

    Dry bulk showed an 18.6% decline compared to the first three quarters of last year. Within this segment, biomass throughput actually increased as a result of the increased firing of this product by Dutch power stations. The growing production of electric power using solar, wind and gas has contributed to a decline in the throughput of thermal coal. Falling steel production in Rotterdam’s hinterland – particularly in Germany – has also had a negative impact on the volumes of iron ore and coke put through the port. Agribulk throughput rose as a result of increased import.

    The 10.4% decline in the liquid bulk segment in the first nine months of 2020 was mainly caused by the reduced uptake of crude oil by the refineries that transport this product via Rotterdam. This could mainly be attributed to the exceptionally low refining margins recorded in the past three quarters. These low refining margins were caused by the very low prices for refined oil products – specifically petrol and kerosene – which due to the Covid-19 crisis were in very poor demand in Europe over the past few months. This in turn led to a decline in the throughput of oil products as a result of decreased trade and the retention of existing stock in storage tanks.

    LNG imports also declined in recent months as a result of lower import volumes caused by the extensive gas reserves currently found in Europe.

    Within the other liquid bulk category, biofuels throughput increased thanks to Rotterdam’s strong position in this market. There was a modest decline in the throughput of chemical products due to the decreased import of basic feedstock.

    The volume of containers handled in Rotterdam up to and including Q3 fell by 2.1% in tonnes, and 4.7% in TEU. This decline was caused by a stronger decline in the demand for new goods in Europe than in China. So far this year, the decreased import of products from Asia has been accompanied by increased export to Asia, especially meat exports, chemicals and timber. Also Rotterdam’s improved competitiveness in transshipment from Scandinavia and the Baltic to China contributed to more export volume. This means that the port of Rotterdam sends fewer empty containers back than in previous years, when import between Asia and Rotterdam consistently exceeded export. In view of the number of services that had to be cancelled and the severity of the Covid crisis, the decline in container throughput volumes can ultimately be considered quite modest.

    One of the freight categories hit hardest during the first three quarters of 2020 was roll on/roll off, due to the decreased transport of people and goods to and from the United Kingdom. A very poor second quarter was followed by a strong recovery in the third quarter. This bounce-back can be explained among other things by the stocking up on supplies in Q3 in anticipation of the expiry of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020.

    The port of Rotterdam has the greatest number of transhipment connections with other ports worldwide. This was confirmed in a report recently published by the United Nations. The port has made considerable progress in the construction of the Container Exchange Route, which is expected to become available for operational tests with vehicles in the second quarter of 2021.

    In the third quarter of 2020, Rotterdam once again took new steps forward when it comes to raising the sustainability of its power network. The Port of Rotterdam Authority is the first of its kind to become a member of the Hydrogen Council, a global coalition of companies that seek to stimulate the energy transition by promoting the use of hydrogen. Contractors Tennet and Van Oord are currently laying thick submarine cables that will transport power generated by offshore wind farms to shore. In due time, this power will be used to make blue hydrogen that will allow Rotterdam’s petrochemical industry to make considerable progress on its path towards zero-emissions production.

    The port has also made quite some headway in the field of digitalisation. Over 50 shipping companies have already adopted the navigation and planning tool Navigate, and by now, 95% of the Dutch barge and rail operators share their data directly with Navigate.

    The Port of Rotterdam Authority’s former pilot project Boxinsider has been transferred to Portbase, where it has been developed further into a fully functional application that was launched under the new name Cargo Tracker. Companies can use this application to monitor the movements of import containers in Rotterdam’s port area, and are automatically notified of any delays. The launch of this new application allows Portbase to further strengthen its position as a European data platform.

    A number of partners have successfully rounded off a trial with the new energy platform Distro. This platform helps companies in the port to reduce energy costs – on the one hand by taking better advantage of electric power that is generated locally, on the other by smoothing peaks in demand on the grid. This contributes to Rotterdam’s climate goal of a fully carbon-neutral port by 2050. After establishing the platform’s functionality under real-life conditions this summer, parties will be working hard in the months ahead to prepare its commercial launch.




2021 December 4

13:09 USCG, royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force sign MOU
12:34 The Hurtigruten terminal has been renamed Jektevik terminal
11:02 Port of Rotterdam Authority embarks on partnerships with three promising maritime companies

2021 December 3

18:26 Hydrographic Company set to establish Center of Engineering and Technical Expertise
18:07 ABP Humber complete oil spill incident management exercise
17:52 Wärtsilä OPTI-DP Engagement Tool supporting the marine industry to configure optimised propulsion arrangements for DP vessels
17:45 Ocean Network Express conducts a joint crisis management drill with Seaspan Corporation
17:40 Transport Strategy of Russia until 2030 with forecast until 2035 published on official portal
17:22 MSC adds Hamburg to its feeder service „Baltic Loop 3“
17:02 Vyborg Shipyard launches KMT01 trawler named Kara Sea
16:32 South African minister visits Port of Rotterdam to discuss hydrogen exports
16:05 PD Ports contracts Konecranes to convert four RTGs to electric
15:31 Four Jones Act CTVs built to ABS Class to support U.S. offshore wind development
15:17 ABS, NYK, MTI and WinGD team-up to verify design with modeling and simulation
14:03 Jurong Port joins the Castor Initiative
13:30 ABS awards sustainability notations to two Harvey Gulf vessels
13:04 Kapitan Dranitsyn and Admiral Makarov icebreakers reinforced icebreaker group on NSR
12:57 Royal IHC delivers key components for “R.B. Weeks” to Weeks Marine
12:42 Icebreaker assistance season begins in White Sea waters
12:17 Sailing practice of 2021 on Mir sailing ship successfully completed
11:21 NCSP Group's consolidated revenue for 9M’2021 rose by 9.3%
10:53 Foreign contractors can be involved to build LNG-powered icebreakers for Arctic
10:38 MABUX: Bunker prices may demonstrate multidirectional changes with tendency to grow on Dec 3
10:29 The Korean Register publishes guidance for containers loading on bulk carriers
10:20 MSU-1 to perform reconstruction of Gorodetsky hydrosystem locks
09:57 Annual repair dredging in Gulf of Ob from 2023 estimated at 5 million cbm
09:35 Crude oil prices rise on OPEC+ decision to keep oil output increase in January
09:18 Baltic Dry Index as of December 2

2021 December 2

18:36 NRP buys handysize drybulk carrier
18:06 2M Alliance’s Far East liner service „AE 7/Condor“ calls at Hamburg again
17:54 Icebreaker assistance season starts in Big Port St. Petersburg on December 7
17:36 Vitol is first customer to approve completely digital inspection of cargo tanks
17:15 BIMCO launches new contract for employment of security escort vessels
16:45 GTT will design the tanks of four new LNG carriers ordered by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering to operate in Arctic waters
16:25 MOL announces delivery of next-generation coal carrier 'EeneX' series
16:05 PSA & ONE launch environmentally friendly barge service at Jurong Island Terminal
15:42 “K” Line conducts trial use of marine biofuel for decarbonization on car carrier
15:38 Wärtsilä wins order to supply cargo handling system for second LNG bunker vessel being built by Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding
15:23 Verifavia launches industry’s first real-time carbon intensity indicator dashboard
14:55 Two more LK-60 icebreakers needed for regular year-round navigation on Northern Sea Route
14:28 Equinor and SSE reach financial close on the third phase of the world's biggest offshore wind farm
14:04 Nuclear-powered icebreaker Sibir to commence operation in Kara Sea in early January 2022 – Vyacheslav Ruksha
13:42 MABUX: Bunker Weekly Outlook, Week 48, 2021
13:02 European shipowners call for further action in the Gulf of Guinea
12:40 Rolls-Royce to supply eight mtu engines for new Svitzer tugs in Brazil
12:01 Throughput of Azov port in 11M’2021 climbed by 1% YoY
12:00 NORDEN simplifies business unit structure
11:36 Norway’s Eksfin tops NOK 10bn in offshore wind financing as Dogger Bank C reaches financial close
11:34 Annual throughput of Severnaya Zvezda project on Taimyr peninsula to exceed 7 million tonnes from 2026
11:10 MABUX: Uncertainty on Global bunker market to continue on Dec 02
10:00 Digital Twin Conference 2022 to be held virtually on 11-12 May 2022
09:33 Crude oil prices are rising in expectation of OPEC+ meeting
09:19 Baltic Dry Index as of December 1

2021 December 1

19:15 PortNews to hold Ship Repair, Modernization and Components Conference on 20 September 2022 in Saint-Petersburg
18:31 DP World celebrates 2,000 members of the Digital Freight Alliance
18:07 CMA CGM and Shell perform first Bio-LNG bunkering operation in Rotterdam
17:42 8 new fuel-efficient ships to join the X-Press Feeders fleet
17:26 Danish Smyril Lines Cargo starts second service between Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Rotterdam
17:06 Port of Antwerp invests in digitalisation of radar infrastructure
16:47 Western Australia and Port of Rotterdam to collaborate on renewable hydrogen