The Port of Barcelona has logged its best ever half-year traffic figures, with total traffic in H1 2017 up by 18% and lo-lo container throughput up by 27.2%, year-on-year.
Overall cargo traffic in H1 2017 totalled 28.6 Mt (+ 18% year on year). Container traffic increased by 27.2% to 1.3M TEU, liquid bulk volume increased by 10.9% and ro-pax tonnage by 7.2%.
As regards container traffic, transhipment moves more than doubled. Commenting on this, APB President Sixte Cambra said: “Although not related directly to our local economy, transhipment allows us to be more competitive in stowage operations, since we have a greater critical mass of freight. Furthermore, import and export companies benefit from the connectivity that these lines bring to reach new markets in more competitive conditions.”
Meanwhile, loaded import and export container vollumes continued their upward trend (up 4.5% and 4.7% respectively). APB notes that for the first time import containers (276,529 TEU) in H1 2017 exceeded the pre-crisis record of 272,138 TEU achieved in H1 2007.
Forecasts for H2 2017 are very positive, due partly to new services from MSC, linking Barcelona with India, the United States, Canada and Brazil. At present, the port has 46 regular container lines, which will increase to 51 with the incorporation of the new MSC services.
Regarding ro-ro traffic, the port handled 199,906 ITU during H1 2017, an increase of 6.9 % year on year. Ro-ro traffic icovers cabotage with the Balearic and Canary Islands and traffic on GNV's "motorways of the sea" services connecting Barcelona with Italy and North Africa. The latter came to 73,081 ITU (+ 7.2%), equivalent to around 146,000 TEU diverted from overland transport.
New vehicles traffic up to June fell by 8.7% to 436,182 units. The business was particularly affected by stevedoring strikes [over the SAGEP reforms], since manufacturers set up contingency plans to transport vehicles via alternative modes of maritime traffic, particularly for export flows. However, imports continued to increase at a rate of 5.6%.
During the first half of the year, the port recorded net turnover of €79.6M, a year-on-year increase of 3.1%. Net profit stood at €22.1M, up 15.1% on the €19.2M profit in H1 2016. Operating cash flow was €45M, an increase of 3.9%.
Likewise, and thanks precisely to the capacity to generate own resources, the port reduced a significant part of the long-term debt that it holds with the EIB. After drawing down €43.6M, the debt stands at €303.9M.
Source: WorldCargo News