24 January 2011

Amsterdam Transhipment And RoRo Traffic Up But Container Shipping Down  

Bigger Logistics Site Under Construction but not at the Expense of the Environment

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NETHERLANDS – This month saw the Port of Amsterdam present freight tonnage figures for 2010 and to use a paraphrase of a football analogy it was very much a year of two halves. The Amsterdam port is part of the North Sea Canal region along with the ports of IJmuiden, Beverwijk and Zaanstad. In Amsterdam port transhipments were down 1% to around 72.5 million tonnes, after dropping 7.1% in the first six months, the second half of the year showing a strong 5% recovery.

In Ijmuiden, mainly due to a strong demand for steel, transhipment increased by 30% reaching 17 million tonnes, Beverwijk witnessed an increase and Zaanstad held its own. Overall this meant that the four Amsterdam Seaports ended the year 2010 with a 4% transhipment increase, the port region ending the year with transhipments of approximately 90 million tonnes.

Recovery is also visible in the rising tonnage levels of ore transhipped with same applying to agricultural bulk, sand, gravel and minerals. Roll-on/Roll-off transhipment recovered strongly this year, while general cargo and container transhipment declined. In total the Amsterdam port processed no more than 1 million tonnes of container cargo in 2010 but of the 200,000 square metres of logistics sites currently being developed in the country, half of it is for the Port of Amsterdam.

The Port of Amsterdam is the fourth largest port in Europe and aims to be a smart port with sustainable growth being the key objective. The management intend that growth should ensure job opportunities and income whilst the Port makes clever use of the available space. They wish for the port to grow in conjunction with partners within the regions business community without damaging the environment so as to make the area both attractive and interesting to the people of Amsterdam.

Practical evidence of the intent to work toward less pollution can be seen by a recent decision by the port authorities. As of the 1st January Amsterdam joined with some other Dutch ports to reward clean ocean going vessels with discounts on their port dues. Vessels which score better than the legal norm on the Environmental Ship Index (ESI), the new international standard for ships’ emissions into the atmosphere, will be rewarded.

Photo:- Courtesy Port of Amsterdam (Port Consultants)

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