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Port of Antwerp reports dry bulk handling increases

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Dry Bulk,

The port of Antwerp handled over 111 million t of freight during the first six months of this year, 2.8% more than in the same period last year. The port reported that container freight has once more performed well after a number of exceptional years, with an increase of 2.5% in terms of tonnage and 1.9% in TEU. Liquid bulk, a regular climber, finished 1.8% up at the end of June.

“We have achieved them against a background of already good performance,” declared Port Authority CEO Jacques Vandermeiren. “In 2016 Antwerp was one of the few ports in the Hamburg-Le Havre range to achieve growth figures. If after that we can once more produce a positive report then we have every reason for satisfaction.”

But he also warned: “We have to look ahead; these volumes also demonstrate the need for additional container capacity in the port of Antwerp. We will do everything necessary to give the port companies the oxygen that they need in order to prosper. Our companies create employment, not only within the port itself but also far beyond. We have to keep supplying this engine of employment in Flanders,” he concluded.

In terms of dry bulk, the amount of dry bulk handled during the first two quarters rose by 1.1%. Ores did particularly well (up 27.7%), which is not surprising in view of the increase in steel exports. Fertilizers too were among the growth categories, at 3.3%. Only kaolin (down 10.3%) and gravel (down 18.4%) experienced difficulties in comparison with the same period last year.

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