The port of Hamburg boosted container traffic 14.2 percent in 2011 from a year ago, consolidating the port's position as the second-largest container hub in Europe.
Throughput at the port hit 9 million 20-foot equivalent units last year, while overall traffic expanded 9.1 percent, or 11 million metric tons, to 132.2 million tons, largely because of higher container and coal shipments.
Hamburg boosted its share of the fiercely competitive north European container market by a small but significant 1.3 percent, outpacing growth at rivals Antwerp, up 2.3 percent at 8.66 million TEUs, and Rotterdam, which grew traffic 6 percent to 11.9 million TEUs.
“For 2012 we are also reckoning with an increase in throughput figures, although this will slow down compared to 2011,” said Claudia Roller, CEO of Port of Hamburg Marketing.
The Baltic region, East Asia and North and South America were the main drivers of growth in container traffic, accounting for 82 percent of the extra boxes, the port said. The U.S. posted the biggest growth, of 81.6 percent, to jump from twelth to sixth place among Hamburg’s foreign trade partners.
Hamburg’s overall cargo growth also outpaced Antwerp, which was up 5 percent at 187.2 million tons, and Rotterdam, which rose just 0.8 percent to 433 million tons.
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