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Port news from Marseilles Fos

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Marseilles Fos posts 14% container growth   

Container throughput at leading French cargo port MarseillesFos hit 431, 718 teu to the end of May – up 14% on the first five monthslast year – but a dip in oil volumes left overall traffic down 4% on 35.5million tonnes.

Box traffic led general cargo tonnage to a 12% rise at7.1MT, with ro-ro services contributing 1.7MT (+1%) and conventional tradesgrowing 21% to 1.1MT.  Dry bulks also soared at 5.1MT (+28%).

In contrast, liquid bulks fell 12% to 23.3MT as the oil sector slumped 13% to 21.9MT.  Crude imports were down 25% to 9.1MT for domestic refineries and by 15% to 3.3MT for pipeline deliveries to Switzerland and Germany.  LNG was 22% worse on 2.4MT but refined products improved 15% for6.1MT and LPG gained 14% for 1.0MT.  Liquid chemicals and agro-products made upthe 1.4MT balance with a 5% increase.

Passenger throughput increased 5% overall to 583, 000after ferry carryings rose 13% to 353, 000.  Cruise numbers were 6% down at 230, 000 but this marked a recovery compared with the 25% first quarter deficit following the loss of weekly calls due to the Costa Concordia incident.

China mission targets ‘slow steaming’ coup

Marseilles Fos commercial personnel attended this month’s Transport & Logistics trade show in Shanghai to promote theport’s competitive transit time as a southern gateway to Europe for containers from China.

The port is focused on winning new traffic from China– already its main container client – based on the introduction of‘slow steaming’, which has added five days to ship rotations serving ports in northern Europe.  Briefing potential customers, the MarseillesFos delegation highlighted the port’s two new Fos2XL box terminals, itsintermodal links with the rest of France and Europe and its extensive logistics parks developments with major-name users like home furnishings giant IKEA.

Fos currently handles 16 container lines from China, including five direct weekly services from Shanghai with a transit time of 23days: the MD-2/CKYH Alliance of Cosco, K Line, Yang Ming and Hanjin (with Evergreen and China Shipping slots); the Loop 8/G6 Alliance of Hapag Lloyd, NYK, OOCL, APL, MOL and Hyundai; AMC-1/AMX-1 with UASC, China Shipping and Hanjin/Yang Ming slots; MEX-1/AE-11 from CMA-CGM and Maersk; and MSC’s Dragon Express.

Marseilles boss in UPF chair

Marseilles Fos executive chairman Jean-Claude Terrier has been unanimously elected as chairman of the Union des Ports de France (UPF). He was appointed as director-general of the Marseilles port authority inSeptember 2008 and four months later was re-designated as head of the executive board created under national port reforms.

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