First-half seaborne cargo handling -12%, container throughput -12.4

Corona pandemic reduces seaborne cargo throughput in Port of Hamburg

Only too evident worldwide, the negative repercussions of the Corona pandemic are also affecting the throughput trend in Germany’s largest universal port. In the first six months of the year, for instance, seaborne cargoes loaded/discharged at its terminals totalled just 61.2 million tons. That represents a twelve percent downturn. Both the main elements of throughput were hit, being well down on last year’s excellent figures. General cargo handling was 12.2 percent lower at 42.5 million tons, bulk cargo handling 11.7 percent down at 18.7 million tons. In the container handling segment, a total of 4.1 million TEU – 20-ft standard containers – were shifted across the quay walls, a 12.4 percent fall on the previous year.

“We are naturally not pleased about this trend, but the drop in first-half throughput caused by the pandemic seriously affected all ports in Northern Europe. Owing to the weakness of the world economy and some withdrawals or considerable delays of global supply chains, as expected the effect turned out to be more severe in the second quarter than in the first three months,” said Axel Mattern, Joint CEO, Port of Hamburg Marketing.

Yet it is also important that even so, the port continues to provide cargo-handling and logistics services on a 24/7 basis. Despite difficult economic conditions, a dependable flow of products and raw materials for the population and trade/industry continues, stressed Mattern. “With its cargo-handling terminals, logistics and service providers, and its hinterland transport services, the port remains fully operational. That is truly appreciated by our customers and also gives our workers security,” said Mattern.

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