The Port of Gdansk pulls ahead of other ports
- a summary of the first half of 2015
The past year has passed at the Port of Gdansk in an atmosphere of record-breaking results, not only in terms of total volume of goods handled, but also general cargo, containers, grain and the size of merchant ships.
European Union restrictions introduced with respect to trade with Russia together with a difficult situation on the shipping market globally gave grounds for a rather cautious forecast for the current year. However, by all indications, similarly to last year, the market has appreciated the potential of the Port of Gdansk judging by the number of transhipments completed within the first six months of this year.
During this period, a historic result in terms of trade turnover was beaten again - over 17 million tons of cargo were handled on the quayside, exceeding the forecasted plan by nearly 7% and surpassing last year's result by 11.8%.
This is a result which, after six months, only a few of the top ten ports on the Baltic Sea can boast of. Of these, only Ust-Luga slightly surpassed Gdansk in terms of growth compared to the corresponding period last year, achieving a jump of + 15.7%. Other leading Baltic ports in this period recorded low single-digit increases or even considerable declines in some cases.
Such impressive results for the current year were achieved in Gdansk thanks to record-breaking volumes of liquid fuels, 7 million tonnes of which were handled at the quayside - 30% more in comparison to the same period last year which, for the record, was the third best year in succession in the history of the port in this cargo group. It is worth mentioning that such a result has never been achieved before (even during 2010, the record year for fuel) after only half a year.
Deservedly, coal transshipment enjoyed similarly excellent results at the Port of Gdansk since in the first half of the year the increase was almost 13% higher than in the previous year, i.e. 2 million tonnes of which 62% concerned export.
The first half of this year saw an improved trade turnover in other bulk by almost 4% which, as we indicated at the end of last year, was an impressive figure. 2014 brought the third best result in the history of the port in handling this cargo group. The two best results took place in 2011 and 2012 - the period of a record number of infrastructure investment projects in Poland which drove trade demand - especially in goods within this group and mainly in aggregates.
The last period of the year is also a continuation of a winning streak in terms of cargo handling, which remained at a very similar level compared to the previous year - 5.5 million tonnes of which almost 92% were containers. The dynamics of handling the latter, as in other Polish ports decreased due to historically low freight rates globally. However, recent reports, which were also shared on our website just a few weeks ago, about the planned initiation of the next regular oceanic service in Gdansk, allow us to look optimistically into the future.
A slightly smaller turnover during the year was recorded in Gdansk in grain handling, which amounted to nearly 780 thousand tonnes, that is less than 5% less in comparison with last year.
To sum up, this year should be considered extremely successful, if not record-breaking, for the Port of Gdansk , especially taking into consideration the situation in the closest Baltic ports, including Latvian or Russian ports (except for the aforementioned Ust-Luga). At the moment, with such high growth in transhipments in Gdansk compared to other top ports, one conclusion can be reached - the gap between this port and others has significantly closed. Will 2015 take Gdansk further up the league table of the largest ports on the Baltic Basin? .... Time will tell.