Shipping and port activity in the Republic of Ireland rose by 2% in the third quarter of 2016 when compared to the corresponding period of 2015, according to the latest iShip Index by the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO).
Four of the five principal freight segments grew in the third quarter of 2016, while the total Roll-on/Roll-off (Ro/Ro) and Lift-on/Lift-off (Lo/Lo) traffic continued to rise steadily, increasing by 6% when compared to the same quarter of 2015.
Traffic in the Ro/Ro freight sector, the majority of which moves between Ireland and Great Britain, saw volume growth of 5% in the third quarter, representing the fourth consecutive third quarter increase in this freight category since 2012.
With three consecutive third quarter increases, the Lo/Lo traffic grew by 6% in this quarter to 174,791 TEU. Both Lo/Lo imports and exports performed strongly, rising by 5% and 7%, respectively.
When Northern Irish ports are included, all-island Ro/Ro volume grew by 4% in three-months period of 2016, while all-island Lo/Lo traffic grew by 2%.
The overall bulk traffic segment saw tonnage volumes decrease by 0.02%, excluding transshipments, when compared to the previous year. This was driven primarily by a 10% drop-off in liquid bulk as well as a 14% drop in coal.
Break bulk, which largely consists of imports of construction and project related commodities, increased by 7%, while dry bulk traffic grew by 3% driven mainly by fertilizer.