After nine months, Port of Zeebrugge posts a strong result: +3.6% growth

  • roroverkeer
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The total tonnage for the period January-September in 2021 has increased by +3.6% compared to the same period last year. Container traffic, roll-on/roll-off traffic, solid bulk, and general cargo all registered a very positive result. Only liquid bulk recorded a decrease. 

Roll-on/roll-off traffic rose by 10.6% to 10,989,043 tonnes.

In the handling of new cars there was an increase of 11.3 % compared to January-September 2020, but a decrease of -24.7 % compared to 2019. The automotive sector has been under pressure since the pandemic. Currently, there is a global shortage of microchips, which is affecting the production of new cars. 

Container traffic in the port of Zeebrugge is still on the rise. After nine months, there is a growth of 19.4% (15,577,464 tons, +25.7% TEU) in the lift-on/lift-off and roll-on/roll-off containers, compared to 2020. The growth in LoLo containers can be seen both in the handling of shortsea containers (+32.3%), deepsea containers (+47%), and estuary shipping (+30.5%). 

The volume of liquid bulk handled in the port of Zeebrugge decreases by 23.2% (7,991,153 tons). This decrease is due to exceptionally high LNG volumes (-29.8%) in 2020, which have meanwhile normalized.

General cargo increases by 6.3 % to a volume of 503,040 tons. 

The solid bulk increases by 3.8 % to a volume of 1,340,443 tons. 

The cruise sector in Zeebrugge experienced a restart in the month of September after no cruise calls were possible since 11 March 2020 because of the pandemic. This fall, another 30 cruises are planned. Shipping companies Aida and MSC Cruises are offering a metropolitan tour in the coming months (Hamburg, Southampton/London, Le Havre/Paris, Zeebrugge/Bruges/Brussels, and Rotterdam/Ijmuiden/Amsterdam) and P&O Cruises has traditional Christmas Break-Away Cruises on offer for cruise lovers. 

Tom Hautekiet, CEO Port of Zeebrugge:

"The port of Zeebrugge manages to keep on growing, something we can be very proud of. However, if we look at the figures month by month, we do notice a slight slowdown. The current challenges in the logistics chain in Europe, such as the British driver shortage and the congestion problems, will not be eliminated in the short term and are also expected to have a negative effect in our port."


Overview Period January-September: 2021 vs. 2020

TOTAL TONNAGE (in mio tons)

                                                                    2021                      2020                   %

RoRo                                                           11                         9,9                10,6%

ff. new cars (in numbers)            1.655.897             1.487.730               11,3%

Containers                                              15,6                           13               19,4%

Liquid bulk                                                 8                        10,4              -23,2%

ff. LNG                                                       6,4                          9,2              -29,8%

General cargo                                 503.040                  473.139                 6,3%

Solid bulk                                      1.340.443               1.291.549                 3,8%

­TOTAL TONNAGE                                   36,4                        35,2                 +3,6%