Spanish container volumes up in 2016

APM Terminals. Source: Algeciras Port Authority

The year 2016 Spain’s major ports have finished on a positive note, registering growth in their container traffic.

Algeciras, that was overtaken by Valencia in 2015, now outperformed its rival and confirmed its status of the country’s largest container hub by generating throughput of 4.759 mln TEU, which is equivalent to an increase of 5.4% to 2015. The growth is understandably attributed to international transhipment volumes forming the port’s base, which rose by 5.54%, up to 3.853 mln TEU. Local transshipment grew by 7.19% to 0.528 mln TEU. Besides, a rise of 21.64% in exports can be noted, up to 0.216 mln TEU.

Valencia ended 2016 with its best historical record of 4.722 mln TEU and marked a further 2.32% increase, after that of previous year of 3.9%. The positive figures are accounted for by a rise in international traffic confirming the port as an important platform for Spanish seaborne foreign trade, as was highlighted in the Port Authority’s press release.  Thus, exports rose by 3.65% to 1.009 TEU and imports – by 2.66% to 0.998 TEU. Transhipment, however, still plays a large part in the port’s traffic, making up 53.2% of its throughput. In 2016 it increased just by 0.08% to 2.511 mln TEU.

Barcelona showed a tremendous growth of 14.5% in 2016, the largest in the last decade, up to 2.237 mln TEU. The increase has been noted in all segments, i.e. in foreign container traffic (+5.86%, 1.202 mln TEU), in cabotage with Balearic and Canary Islands (+10.41%, 0.124 mln TEU) and in transhipment (47%, 0.432 mln TEU), the last figure indicating a positive tendency of recovery of the traffic that has been substantially damaged by the crisis years.  The growth of imports (+8.75%, 0.518 mln TEU) and of exports (+3.77%, 0.684 mln TEU) also indicates a reactivation of the internal consumption and a trend of the country’s industry to open to the world, notes the Port Authority. The major part of the international traffic goes to Asia (43% of export volumes) as well as comes from Asia (77% of imports), with China being the largest commercial partner of the port (23% of the traffic).

Spanish major container ports

PortThroughput 2015, TEUThroughput 2016, TEU2016/2015
Algeciras4 515 7684 759 5555,40%
Valencia4 615 1964 722 2732,32%
Barcelona1 954 2622 236 96114,47%
Julia Louppova:
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