Container cargo at the port grew twice as fast over the year, increasing by 8% to around 7m teu, 0.5m teu up on the previous year. The container trade with other European countries and with North America in particular continued to grow strongly, as did imports from the Far East. The Deurganck dock handled a total of 800,000 teu, the highest degree of utilisation in the region for a new facility in its first year of operation.
Conventional and breakbulk cargo volumes also grew, rising by more than 3% to 18.5m tonnes. This was boosted by “explosive” growth from August onwards in imports of steel from China and India. Ro-ro traffic increased by 5.7%, with a total of 3.87m tonnes of ro-ro cargo.
The car trade expanded by 11%, thanks to additional imports from Italy, South Korea and Japan and growing exports to west Africa and South Africa. Over the year, 319,000 cars were imported and 575,000 exported.