DP World handled 71.4m teu across its global portfolio of container terminals in 2018, representing 2.9% like-for-like growth, despite a decline at its UAE-hub due to a reduction in low-margin cargo.
Volumes fell by 2.7% last year to 15m teu at its flagship facilities in the UAE although this was offset by steady improvements across its worldwide portfolio.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman and CEO of DP World, said: “Our Europe and Americas portfolio saw strong growth with continued ramp-up in London Gateway (UK), Yarimca (Turkey) and Prince Rupert (Canada), while performance in Africa remains robust driven by Dakar (Senegal) and Sokhna (Egypt).
“In the UAE, the softer volumes were due to the loss of low-margin throughput, where we remain focused on high margin cargo and maintaining profitability.”
On a consolidated level, the operator’s portfolio handled 36.8m teu in 2018, a 0.8% improvement on a reported basis and up 1.4% on a like-for-like basis.
Like-for-like consolidated container volume does not include volumes at Berbera (Somaliland), Limassol (Cyprus), Doraleh (Djibouti), Saigon (Vietnam) and normalises for the consolidation of Santos (Brazil).
According to bin Sulayem, the terminal operator strengthened its product offering last year, enabling it to participate in a wider part of the supply chain.
He added: “Looking ahead to 2019, we expect our portfolio to continue to deliver growth and our focus remains on delivering operational excellence, managing costs and disciplined investment to remain the trade partner of choice.
“Given the steady volume performance of our portfolio, we are well placed to meet full year 2018 market expectations.”