LONDON ---Emerging markets offer the best opportunities for trade and investment by the container industry in this year’s slow-growth environment, according to Richard Mitchell, chief commercial officer of APM Terminals.
Speaking at Monday’s opening session of Containerisation International’s Annual Global Liner Conference in London, Mitchell said, “Volumes were hit in the developed world and in Eastern Europe, while Africa, the Indian Subcontinent and the Middle East fared best. Now – in the new normal – markets will grow slower.”
He said emerging markets offer higher growth opportunities than developed markets in 2010 since their decline in 2009 was not as severe – “and they’re expected to recover faster.”
Mitchell said the port industry and liner industry are closely intertwined and facing extraordinary times now that they experienced the first ever decline in global container port volumes – estimated at 10 percent last year.
Another reason the container industry should look at investment in emerging markets is that they have “the highest levels of potential growth as the wealth of individuals improves in emerging nations over time,” he said.
APM Terminals, which operates a global terminal network of 50 ports in 34 countries, generated 37 percent of its 2009 revenue in emerging markets in Asia, India, Africa and Brazil.