Spanish container trade for December 2020 slightly up when compared to last year

The port statistics for December 2020, as published this week by Puertos del Estado, show that the number of containers imported or exported to or from Spanish ports plus the container traffic between Spanish ports (cabotage) was slightly more than last year. However, when comparing with data for November 2020, total traffic slightly decreased, mainly caused by a decline of import, export and cabotage traffic in Algeciras, Barcelona and Valencia. Transhipment went up in all ports but Algeciras.

Total traffic in December decreased by 0.2% when compared to November but was 11.1% higher when compared to December last year. Total traffic, including transhipment volumes, for 2020 is 4.7% less than that for 2019.

When we have a closer look at the major ports: Algeciras, Barcelona, and Valencia, we observe that Algeciras worsened its Month-on-Month performance for both transhipment (-2.5%) and international and local traffic (-22.8%) and as such it’s total monthly traffic decreased (-5.4%), Barcelona handled again more transhipment (+3.7%) but experienced a small decrease in its import, export and cabotage traffic (-1.8%), similar to Valencia that experienced a growth for its transhipment traffic (+3.8%) and a decline in its international and local traffic (-4.6%).

Source: Data from Puertos del Estado elaborated by CLAUpartners consulting

Container import, export and cabotage volumes for Spain reached 633.5 thousand TEU in December, and despite the monthly decrease (-2.3%) it was 3.8% more than in 2019.

When we compare the COVID-19 crisis with the financial crisis that started in September 2008, we see a much stronger recovery today than happened then, as is clearly illustrated by the following graph with the index for import, export and cabotage traffic for all Spanish ports, setting the index of the volume handled at 100 at the start of the period. In December 2020 traffic went below the 100 level again.

Source: Data from Puertos del Estado elaborated by CLAUpartners consulting

In a next article we will present the annual volumes for other cargoes as well. Especially, cruise traffic and export/import of vehicles were hardly hit by the COVID-19 crisis

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