Ro-ro freight most dynamic for North Sea Port
North Sea Port, a major harbour of NorthWest Europe, has almost restored its freight traffic after slowing down caused by the pandemic. In 2021, the Dutch-Flemish port increased its cargo turnover by 9 per cent. The ro-ro freight showed the highest increase, plus 37 per cent, in the past year.
North Sea Port handled 68.9 million tonnes via maritime shipping in 2021. This resulted in a 9 per cent growth. The ro-ro segment has become the most dynamic by adding 37 per cent of new freight volumes. ” Again, we not only observe growth in 2021 but also a bigger share versus the record year in 2019. The rise was due to increased transportation of trailers and steel. The number of cars transported remained the same,” the port authority stated. In total, there were handled 3.6 million tonnes of ro-ro freight.
As for dry bulk (building materials, grains, coal, iron ore and scrap metal), which is the most important type of freight for the North Sea Port, it marked the actual recovery to the 2019 year by showing a growth of 12 per cent. Wet bulk (vegetable oils and chemical products) amounted to 16.7 million tonnes or 3 per cent more. The share of breakbulk (cellulose, steel and bananas) increased to 9.5 million tonnes showing a growth of 2 per cent.
Containers were the only type of freight with a decrease at 3 per cent but only in terms of tonnes (2.6 million tonnes). Taking into account the twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU), the containerised freight set an increase of 27 per cent or 262,000 TEU. “One reason for the decline was the reduced transportation of bananas in containers (shift to transportation as breakbulk). The container segment has remained at the same level for the past 3 years,” the North Sea Port Authority summed up.