The port of Antwerp reported a decline in breakbulk volumes for 2016 even as total freight volumes through the port reached record levels.
Authorities reported that conventional breakbulk was expected to have contracted by 2.4 percent over the last 12 months, ending the year at 9.76 million tonnes. Overall freight volume was estimated at 214 million tonnes.
Within the breakbulk segment steel improved 12 percent, but lower volumes of non-ferrous metals, paper and cellulose and fruit meant the amount of conventional breakbulk was down overall.
Growth in the number of seagoing ships calling at Antwerp helped to drive higher freight volumes with a total of 14,523 ships expected to have visited Antwerp in 2016. This equated to a 0.7 percent increase on the previous year.
“Apart from the increased number of ships the growth in gross tonnage is nothing less than spectacular, up 9.5 percent to 402.67 million gross tonnes,” a spokesperson for the port said.
Vandermeiren starts as CEO
The Antwerp Port Authority also said Jacques Vandermeiren commenced as CEO and president of the executive committee on Jan. 1.
Vandermeiren was CEO and president of network operator Elia, and previously senior advisor strategy direction for energy firm Electrabel.
Photo: The port of Antwerp. Credit: APA