Significant decreases in port throughput now over?
The international association of ports and harbours (IAPH) and the world port sustainability programme (WPSP) conduct weekly surveys on the impact of Covid-19 to monitor the current situation in world ports and trends compared to previous weeks.
Compared to last week, the current study said that more ports are now reporting a decrease in container vessel calls. However, the share of ports facing significant decreases (in excess of a 25% drop) fell sharply from 10-11% in the previous two weeks to less than 2% this week.
While the cruise/passenger market remains the most affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, for many ports, the number of calls has remained stable. Cargo volumes have decreased though, with some ports suffering reductions at levels well beyond the 25% threshold.
The general loss of cargo for containers is probably less evident than expected, as April closed with negative year-on-year figures that were much better than initially forecast. Some ports report an increase in blank sailings, mainly on the Europe-Far East routes, others did not register any blank sailings at all this week, but total calls are still down some 20% compared to a normal fully operational week. (mw)