DP World volume jumps on Europe, Asia strength

DP World volume jumps on Europe, Asia strength

A slight dip in traffic at Jebel Ali was not enough to pull down growth at DP World last year.

DP World’s container traffic jumped 6 percent in the final quarter of 2016 driven by a near double-digit increase at its Asia-Pacific terminals and strong growth in Europe.

The Dubai-based port operator handled 16.1 million 20-foot-equivalent units, up from 15.2 million TEUs in the same period in 2015.

The Asia-Pacific and Indian Subcontinent network posted a 9.9 percent year-over-year increase to 7.5 million TEUs; volume in Europe, Middle East, and Africa grew 3.6 percent to 6.6 million TEUs; and traffic at the Americas and Australia terminals grew by just 0.7 percent to 2.1 million TEUs.

The group’s Jebel Ali terminal complex in the United Arab Emirates saw traffic dip 0.7 percent to 3.7 million TEUs.

These like-for-like figures do not include volumes at Yarimca, Turkey, Prince Rupert, Canada, and inland terminals in Antwerp and Stuttgart.

“Despite the challenging market conditions, particularly at our flagship Jebel Ali Port, our portfolio continues to deliver ahead-of-market growth, which once again demonstrates the benefits of operating a globally diversified portfolio,” said Chairman and CEO Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem.

Full-year volume grew 3.2 percent to 63.7 million TEUs from 61.7 million TEUs in 2015 and was 2.2 percent higher on a like-for-like basis.

DP World’s consolidated terminals, where it has majority control, handled 29.2 million TEUs in 2016 up 0.4 percent on a reported basis, but down 1.6 percent on a like-for-like basis.

The company sounded an optimistic note for the current year with volumes stabilizing in Jebel Ali Port.

“And as we look ahead into 2017, we expect our new developments in Rotterdam, Nhava Sheva [India], London Gateway, and Yarimca to drive growth in our portfolio,” said Bin Sulayem.

The DP World CEO said the company will continue to maintain capital spending discipline by growing capacity in line with demand, focus on targeting higher margin cargo, improving efficiency, and managing costs to drive profitability.

DP World in 2017 will reorganize its global business to put more emphasis on regions and the integration of ports and terminals with industrial zones as it has done at Jebel Ali, Bin Sulayem told JOC.com in a November interview.

Contact Bruce Barnard at brucebarnard47@hotmail.com.