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16 Los Angeles Throughput: 6,748,995teu


(-14.0%)


As a barometer of world trade and a key indicator for the US economy, it is no surprise that the port of Los Angeles experienced a sharp volume decline in 2009, falling by over 1.1m teu. A port authority spokesman tells CS that the global


recession “hit our customers smack in the face”, leading the port to respond aggressively and creatively with discounts, incentives, rent price breaks and reduced fees. This means that the port will forego close to US$42m in revenues to help its customers in 2009 and 2010. By spending more time with customers and carving


out a strategic marketing plan, the port hopes to retain and grow its business. It claims these efforts have already begun to pay off with the recent news that Norwegian “no frills” container line, The Containership Company (TCC), will use TraPac as its US West Coast gateway. TCC will operate a weekly service between LA and the Modern Terminals facility at Taicang, Suzhou port, in China.


Trapac itself will undergo an expansion programme


that will generate 300 new terminal jobs. The port tells CS that exports remain strong, growing


by 8% in Q1 2010, and it expects the recovery to continue throughout this year. Recent equipment acquisitions in the port include new


heavy-duty, all-electric trucks, hydrogen fuel cell hybrid- electric trucks and hybrid tugboats. LA received 2,179 container vessel calls in 2009.


17 Tanjung Pelepas Throughput: 6,016,452teu


(+7.5%)


Bucking the global trend, the port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) saw record growth in 2009, with throughput up 422,111teu. The port says this was achieved due to the good performance shown by existing customers as well as new volumes contributed by French carrier CMA CGM, which started calling at PTP in June 2009. Unsurprisingly, transhipment led the growth, with some


carriers choosing to shift transit volumes to PTP. This, it claims, was due to operational efficiencies and lines’ ability to save money because of shorter port calls. But local gateway traffic also increased by 9% year-on-year. The port expects its growth to continue this year with a


total of 6.5m teu forecast. Despite being “cautiously optimistic” due to early signs of global and Malaysian economic recovery, PTP says it remains uncertain as to whether the pace of recovery is sustainable in the longer term. It therefore wants to reduce costs and achieve savings in


order to sustain profitability while the global economic crisis threatens to continue. Further challenges include filling


August 2010


existing surplus capacity and maintaining productivity standards, especially gross crane moves per hour. PTP now boasts 12 deepsea berths totalling 4.3km of


liner quayline, with a further two berths planned. The port has capacity to handle up to 8.5m teu per year, with current container yard capacity 200,000teu, or 38,000 ground slots. In the past five years, 22 quayside gantry cranes, 78 RTGs and 190 trailers have been purchased for the rapidly expanding hub. PTP received a total of 3,745 container vessel calls in 2009.


www.cargosystems.net 23


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