Volume still rising at China’s top ports

Throughput at China’s top 20 container ports rose 4% in the first 11 months of the year compared to 2014 as most of the mainland terminals continue to grow volumes despite slowing trade, Journal of Commerce reports, TASS reports.

Data from the Shanghai Shipping Exchange shows that the top 20 ports in the country handled 166 million TEU /20-foot-equivalent units/ from January through November, and with a month left the full-year throughput is certain to at least reach the 174 million TEUs handled last year.

The general trend is one of slowing throughput growth as foreign demand for China-made products has remained soft for most of the year. China-U.S. trade has been one of the bright spots and container volumes to the U.S. are recording solid growth this year, but China-North Europe container volumes are registering negative growth.

Shanghai remains the busiest Chinese container port, handling 10 million TEUs more than second place Shenzhen. During the month of November, Shanghai throughput was 4% higher YoY, in the 11 months the port added over 1 million containers compared to the same period in 2014.

Even Tianjin increased turnover so far this year despite the massive port explosion that devastated the port earlier this year. So far this year Tianjin has handled 12.8 million TEUs, and should be able to match the full year box numbers of 2014.Throughput at the port in November was up 7% YoY, reaching 1.28 million TEUs. Volumes in September were 25% below the previous year at 922,000 TEU, and 28% in August, when the explosions occurred.

Standing out among the rest of the ports was Dalian, which recorded a November drop year-over-year of 37%. Its year-to-date throughput is half a million containers less than 2014.

The third-busiest China container port was the Ningbo-Zhoushan complex increased volumes by 6% in 11 months, i.e. more than 1.2 million TEUs.

Volume at Guangzhou and its Nansha terminals was up almost 10% in November YoY, handling 1.7 million TEUs. Its 11-month throughput is 6% higher compared to last year.