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Port of Ghent registers best year ever

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Dry Bulk,

Belgium’s Port of Ghent recorded 2016 as the best year ever. The seaborne cargo traffic registered a record with 29.1 million t (an increase of 10.3%).

With a volume of 17.7 million t, Ghent remains the biggest dry bulk port in Belgium for seaborne cargo and this for the fourth year in a row. As such, dry bulk takes up 61% of the seaborne volume (-2%).

Inland traffic increased to 21.9 million t. With a 9% growth, a good year has been ended after 2015 when inland shipping still dealt with a serious blow. 2016 is the fourth best year ever and remains well above the set target figure of 20 million t. The main goods having been transported by inland shipping are coal, gas and diesel oil, sand and gravel.

For 2016, the overall cargo traffic by seagoing and inland navigation reached 51 million t. as against 46.5 million t the year before. This is an increase of 4.5 million t (+9.8%). Consequently, this is the second time that Port of Ghent crosses the limit of a total cargo traffic of 50 million t.

The seaborne cargo volume increased by 10.3% to 29.1 million t. The transatlantic traffic (deepsea traffic) represents 36.1% of this traffic. Shortsea shipping (shipping along the European coasts and on the Mediterranean Sea) takes up a share of 63.9% of this.

The top ten of the main trading partners by sea reaches 19.8 million t and as such represents 68% of this volume (as against 71% in 2015).

The most important shifts are that Canada now takes the first place (instead of at three), Russia remains second and Brazil takes up the third place (instead of the first one). Sweden stays at four for the second year on end and China enters the top ten for the first time.

Consequently, the most important trading partner is Canada with iron ore and wood pellets (3.5 million t). Russia remains second for the eighth consecutive year, with mainly slabs, coal, anthracite and linseed (3.1 million t). Brazil takes up the third place (2.6 million t) with principally iron ore and orange juice.

Sweden (ro-ro traffic) ends at four before the UK (sheet steel and naphtha) at five. Turkey ranks sixth (scrap and sheet steel) and the US is seventh (wood pellets, coal and petroleum coke). At eight, there is Norway (iron ore) followed by Latvia (coal, anthracite and linseed) at nine. China (naphtha) closes the top ten.

In 2016, 2891 seagoing vessels have entered the port, this is 44 more than the year before (+1.6%). The scale increase of the ships continues on its course, also in Ghent.

In inland shipping, the number of vessels ended at 14 073, which is 649 units or almost 5% more.

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