The rise in container handling in the first half of 2018 did not offset the fall in the throughput of wet and dry bulk at the Port of Rotterdam.
Hence, the port reported a throughput of 232.8 million tonnes, a drop of 2.2 percent in total throughput year-on-year.
The decline in bulk goods was mainly seen in the throughput of coal, crude oil and mineral oil products such as fuel oil.
“Coal transshipment fell because of, among other things, the closure of coal-fired power plants, lower energy production by plants that were still in operation and a reduction in the flow of cokes for the steel industry. Striking growth segments were LNG and biomass, which more than doubled by comparison with throughput volumes in the same period last year,” the port said.
The financial position of the Port Authority remained almost unchanged with the result before taxation reaching EUR 126.1 million (USD 146.8 million).
Nevertheless, the net result was strongly influenced by a one-off gain as a result of the fiscal opening balance sheet, a consequence in turn of the Port Authority’s tax liability.
Commenting on the geopolitical strains between world trade blocks, the port added import tariffs and trade quotas interfere with global trade and are therefore bad for the global economy.
“In addition, it is uncertain whether negotiations between the European Union and the United Kingdom will lead to a new trade agreement after Brexit. Both developments are rendering the prospects for the further growth of world trade uncertain. The fluctuations in volume in the Port of Rotterdam would not, for the time being, seem to be caused by recent trade restrictions, the impact of which will be felt only after some time,” the Port of Rotterdam Authority said.