HHLA, Hamburg's biggest stevedore, boosted container traffic 15.4 percent in the first nine months of 2010 from a year ago as ocean carriers added services and Baltic feeder shipments recovered strongly.
The company handled 4.25 million 20-foot equivalent units at terminals in Hamburg and Odessa, Ukraine, in the nine months to the end of September compared with 3.69 million TEUs in the same period in 2009.
Volume soared 28 percent in the third quarter to 1.6 million TEUs, and while growth will slow in the seasonally weak final three months, HHLA said it expects full year volume to be 15 percent above 2009.
By The Numbers: Europe-North America Westbound Container Trade.
Revenue climbed 6.2 percent in the first three quarters to $1.08 billion and profit before interest and tax was 8.9 percent higher at $193.9 million.
HHLA forecast full year revenue of around $1.37 billion and an operating profit close to $247 million.
HHLA said it began to grow again in March with carriers restoring two Europe-Asia services that were suspended during the recession and adding four additional services by October.
The recovery was also driven by "substantial" growth in feeder services to the Baltic that collapsed disproportionately during the global economic crisis.
HHLA's intermodal unit increased traffic by 13.8 percent year-on-year in the first nine months to 1.26 million TEUs from 1.11 million TEUs with traffic on some routes, including Prague, already topping the record highs of 2008.
On Nov. 1 HHLA ended the short time working for some 2,000 workers that was introduced in the summer of 2009. The only exception is the logistics unit.
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