The Swedish container market had a slight downturn during H1 2019, with a 1% fall, but the Port of Gothenburg has reported a steady rise in lo-lo market share and volume
Between January and September this year, the increase stood at 4%, due largely to continued influx of hinterland rail volumes at the port.
Container traffic growth is continuing, following a downturn in 2016-2017 largely associated with strikes at the Maersk-operated Skandia container terminal.
The recovery was particularly noticeable in 2018 with road-based traffic from western Sweden and its hinterland gradually returning to the port, and the trend continued into 2019, attributable in the main to higher volumes from the rest of Sweden. This can be seen in the Q1-Q3 statistics published by Gothenburg Port Authority (GHAB).
The rise in freight flows is borne out by strong figures for rail-based container traffic. Most inland freight arrives at the Port of Gothenburg by rail, with volumes increasing by 20% between January and September. Long-distance volumes from northern and eastern Sweden are also making a comeback.
“The Port of Gothenburg serves the whole of Sweden and the current trend is underpinned by our continued nationwide upturn in the container sector," said Elvir Dzanic, GHAB’s CEO. "The focus at the Port of Gothenburg is on ensuring industry has uninterrupted access to external markets, despite an uncertain business climate and a cautious domestic market.”
However, the port’s intra-European general ro-ro freight traffic (excluding cars) fell by 5% in the January-September 2019 period. The downturn is most noticeable on the Belgian routes.
Throughput of new cars fell by 8% year-on-year, due mainly to a decrease in imports as a result of the fall in new car sales in Sweden. On the plus side, a turnaround was noted in September, with 26,500 cars handled.