At the Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest port, box traffic increased by 5.8% in 2014, afters years of chasing its top rivals in the Le Havre-Hamburg group of ports.
According to the Journal of Commerce, Europe’s largest port handled just short of 12.3 million TEU in 2014, which was up from 11.62 million TEU in 2013.
Rotterdam attributed the solid 2014 performance to a combination of factors, including an improved economy in the Eurozone and the growth exhibited by the UK economy, which is now the fastest growing in Europe.
Driven by an 8.1% increase in Ro/Ro cargo, break-bulk traffic grew more than 12% to 23 million metric tonnes.
In 2015, total traffic is forecast to grow by 1%, with container traffic growing at a faster rate at Rotterdam.
Commenting on future growth, CEO of the Port of Rotterdam Authority, Allard Castelein, said: “This year, the new container terminals on [the] Maasvlakte 2 [site] will be busy starting up. From 2016, however, there will actually be extra capacity for further growth.”
In contrast, Rotterdam’s closest rival, Hamburg, is forecasting growth for 2015 of between 3.8% and 5.1%.
(Source: World Maritime News)