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  • Writer's pictureFirst Port Global (FPG)

7% cargo rise in Amsterdam ports' tonnage

The H1 2019, maritime cargo throughput figure for the Amsterdam region shows a 7% year-on-year increase to 54.1 Mt

This growth was borne by a 12.3% rise to a record 45.4 Mt in the Port of Amsterdam itself. IJmuiden, the other major player in the Amsterdam North Sea Canal Region, saw its Tata Steel captive ore and coal volume drop 12% to 8.5 Mt. The minor ports of Beverwijk and Zaanstad jointly handled around 425,000 tonnes.

Amsterdam gained its new half-year record figure through both liquid bulk, up 10.6% to 25.9 Mt and dry bulk, up 13.8% to 17.8 Mt. The latter figure significantly came about because of a 23% increase of coal traffic, the port’s "black sheep" that the left wing-controlled municipality wants to see the back of.

The rise mainly came from export shipments to non-traditional markets such as India and the Med. The port authority does not see this business as structural and notes that the increase must be seen against a sharp decrease in the past few years.The dry bulk aggregate figure also had a 17% rise of grain transhipment to thank for. General cargo/breakbulk chalked a 20% decline.

Following the introduction of a tourist tax in January.2019, the number of ocean cruise ships visiting the city of Amsterdam decreased from 74 to 51 in the first half of 2019. IJmuiden and Rotterdam, together with the coach companies shuttling passengers to and from Amsterdam, were the beneficiaries of this policy. Similarly, the port - the fourth largest port in Western Europe in tonnage terms - recorded an H1 drop in the number of riverborne cruise ships from 1,272 to 1,189.

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