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60 Barcelona Throughput: 1,800,213teu


(-29.9%)


A decline of 769,336teu saw Barcelona slide 15 places in the Top 100 league in 2009. Throughput plummeted in Q1 2009 but the decline stabilised in the Q2 and was followed by a clear recovery in some goods. Imports and domestic traffic suffered heavily, declining 26% and 20% respectively. The biggest loser, however, was transhipment cargo, which registered a 43% fall. Business from containers and finished vehicles were hit hardest by the economic crisis, according to the port. In a bid to stabilise throughput, the port has this year


reduced its fees to ships, goods and passengers by 1%, while rental rates for the terminal operators have been cut by 0.6%. The port has also intensified its promotional and


commercial activities to attract new business and is launching a quality plan, as well as looking at reinforcing its hinterland position. In 2010 Barcelona received the first call on CSAV’s


Mare Nostrum service, while WEC has started a new route to Felixstowe and other North European ports. In Q1 2010 containerised exports grew by 19% and imports were up 13%.


February 2009 saw the completion of the first phase of


the Prat Wharf which will house the new 2.65m teu TerCat-Hutchison terminal. The port’s Sud wharf is currently being enlarged by 25ha at a cost of €56m, while a €45m is being invested to expand the Adossat wharf by 20ha.


61 Houston Throughput: 1,797,198teu


(+0.1%)


Houston is the only US port in the Top 100 to avoid a volume contraction in 2009, albeit that growth was virtually static at 1,878teu. Nonetheless, this was sufficient to elevate the port five places up the Top 100 league table. The port is “conservatively optimistic” about 2010 and expects mid single-digit growth rates in most cargoes. Houston and the State of Texas boast strong economies


that are expected to drive volume recovery. The port authority points out that by increasing its capacity to meet market demands, it is able to achieve a broader market reach to state-wide markets. The port tells Cargo Systems that its primary challenge


is timing its infrastructure expansions to align with market demands, funding these challenges and security demands versus costs in today’s environment. Expansion of Bayport Container Terminal is


continuing, with 400 metres of quay and 19.4ha of container yard added in Q2 this year. This will be


August 2010


serviced by nine additional Konecranes RTGs and three more ZPMC quayside gantries. In bid to increase the efficiency of the outbound


container truck gates at Barbours Cut and Bayport terminals, an optical character recognition (OCR) system is due to go live in Q3 of 2010.


www.cargosystems.net 55


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