It was a clean sweep for Mediterranean Shipping Co. in the U.S. global containerized trade moving to and from European ports in the 12 months to March 31. The Geneva-based carrier, the world’s second-largest by global fleet capacity, led all others in U.S.-Europe containerized trade (1 million 20-foot equivalent units, good for a 24.6 percent market share), U.S. exports (a 24.9 percent share of the 1.9 million TEUs shipped overall) and U.S. imports (24.4 percent of the 2.3 million TEUs).
MSC’s share of imports and exports in the trade, which encompasses the European port range from St. Petersburg, Russia, in the northeast through the Strait of Gibraltar eastward into the North Mediterranean and the Black Sea, dwarfed the 18.1 percent shares of No. 2 Hapag-Lloyd and No. 3 Maersk Line, 10.3 percent.
The three carriers combined for a 52.9 percent share of the total containerized trade. Overall, the Top 10 export and import carriers accounted for 80.9 percent of the 4.2 million TEUs in the 12-month period.
MSC’s volume increased 4.6 percent from the prior 12-month period. Hapag-Lloyd saw growth of 3.6 percent, while Maersk’s volume dropped 3.7 percent. As of July 25, industry research analyst Alphaliner ranked A.P. Moller-Maersk No. 1 among global container fleet operators with more than 2.6 million TEUs of active liner capacity and a 15.9 percent market share. MSC was second with 2.2 million TEUs and a 13.3 percent share, and Hapag-Lloyd ranked sixth with nearly 650,000 TEUs, good for a 3.9 market share.
Germany in the 12-month period was the largest U.S. partner in trade via European ports, with 18.7 percent of the trade. Second-ranked Belgium accounted for 13.1 percent, and third-ranked Italy, 11.1 percent. The three countries held 42.9 percent of the overall trade. Containerized volume from Germany via European ports increased 9.3 percent year-over-year, while Belgium’s volume rose 3.6 percent and Italy’s dropped 2.1 percent.
The Port of New York and New Jersey extended its dominance as the top U.S. gateway for containerized trade via European ports with a 29.1 percent share, followed by Houston with 13.2 percent and Virginia with 11.9 percent. Together, the three ports’ share of the total trade was 54.2 percent. Containerized volume at New York-New Jersey was up 5.1 percent from the prior 12-month period, while Houston saw a 2.2 percent increase and Virginia advanced 4.8 percent.
Antwerp, Belgium’s largest container port, was the No. 1 European port handling U.S. trade in the European range with a 19 percent share of the market. Second-ranked Bremen-Bremerhaven held 15.1 percent, and third-ranked Rotterdam — Europe’s largest port overall — held 12.7 percent. The three European ports accounted for 46.8 percent of the trade. Antwerp volume was up 3.3 percent from the prior 12-month period, but volume at Bremen-Bremerhaven was down 2 percent and Rotterdam slipped 1.5 percent.
Overall U.S. trade with European ports totaled 4.2 million TEUs in the 12 months to March 31, up 5.1 percent year-over-year, according to Journal of Commerce sister company PIERS. U.S. exports via European ports slipped 0.8 percent to 1.9 million TEUs, while U.S. imports, representing 54.8 percent of the trade, surged 10.6 percent to 2.3 million TEUs.
Contact Marsha Salisbury at email@example.com.