Port of Rotterdam reports higher total cargo throughput despite declining Russia trade

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The Port of Rotterdam reported that the volume of total cargo throughput at the port rose by 0.8% in the first half of 2022 to 233.5 million tonnes in comparison with the same period in 2021 which was 231.6 million tonnes. In many segments, the war in Ukraine led to significant changes. The imports of both LNG and coal rose very sharply as an alternative to reduced European imports of Russian gas by pipeline. The throughput of crude oil increased, with oil products falling off. Throughput of iron ore, agricultural bulk and containers was lower than in the same period last year, the Port of Rotterdam said in a statement on its website on Friday.

In the statement it is mentioned that the Container transport to and from Russia has come to a halt, while persistent bottlenecks in global container logistics have caused cargo to shift from large to smaller container ports.

“In anticipation of the sanctions on coal and oil,” the Port Authority added, ”less Russian coal, crude oil, oil products and LNG were imported in recent months. Companies are increasingly importing from other countries”.

Allard Castelein, the CEO Port of Rotterdam Authority stated that: ‘Europe relies heavily on Russian energy. The current geopolitical situation makes Europe very vulnerable. The availability of energy and raw materials at reasonable prices cannot be taken for granted. A positive development is that concrete steps have been taken in recent months to make our energy supply more sustainable and to further our energy independence, particularly through investment decisions to build a large biorefinery and Europe’s largest green-hydrogen plant”.

As he commented, the business community has made a commitment in the last half year to invest € 3 billion in the energy transition. In addition to the vulnerability of the European energy system, nitrogen emissions continue to be a major bottleneck. Several major projects, including the CO2 capture and storage project Porthos, are being delayed or threatened by delays due to uncertainty and restrictions associated with nitrogen emission, Mr Castelein also said.

Refineries in Northwest Europe are switching to non-Russian oil, with the result that Russian oil is finding its way to other markets, the Port Authority said. The 9.4% decline in the throughput of oil products was mainly due to the structural decline in the imports and re-exports of fuel oil. LNG rose by 45.8%. As it is mentioned, there is very strong demand for LNG as an alternative to the natural gas entering Europe by pipeline from Russia.

Source: Port of Rotterdam    

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