The port authority said cargo volumes were ‘positive’ in view of the persistent world economic crisis, noting that Dunkirk was the only other French port to grow traffic. It added that future activities would be strengthened by developments in Fos 2XL, where two new container terminals become fully operational in March, 2012.
The authority also stressed that the port reforms are already delivering competitive benefits since transfers of personnel and equipment to various terminal operators were completed in June. A total of 411 employees transferred including 160 to Fos and 41 to the Marseilles container terminal Med Europe (ex-Mourepiane). Marseilles Fos was the only French port to transfer maintenance specialists, who made up 80 of the total.
Subsequent performance figures from the Union Maritime et Fluviale – representing 300 companies across 22 professions at the port – show the breakdown rate of ship-to-shore gantries has fallen below 5% and productivity at Med Europe has risen from 14 to 23 moves per hour, eliminating truck waiting time. Meanwhile the doubling of quay length at Fos has slashed ship waiting time close to zero compared with two or three days a year ago.