PortEconomics members Theo Notteboom, Francesco Parola and Giovanni Satta co-authored a study “The relationship between transhipment incidence and throughput volatility in North European and Mediterranean container ports“. This study has recently been published in Journal of Transport Geography (74, pages 371-381). It is often argued that ports with a high sea-sea transhipment share (T/S) are more vulnerable than gateway ports which rely more on hinterland cargo. It is less clear whether the vulnerability of T/S oriented container ports leads to more container throughput volatility compared to gateway ports or ports with a mixed cargo base (i.e. T/S and gateway flows). Throughput volatility is defined here as the variability or the dispersion of the cargo throughput in a port throughout a given period.
The statistical test results show that throughput volatility is much higher for transhipment hubs then for other container ports.
In this paper, the authors examine the relationship between throughput volatility in North European and Mediterranean container ports (including also Med ports in the Near East and North Africa) and the sea-sea transhipment incidence/dependency of these ports. First, they group a large sample of North European and Mediterranean ports in transhipment dependency classes ranging from transhipment ports over mixed ports to gateway ports. Second, we calculate the container throughput volatility between 1990 and 2016 based on two volatility measures. Third, they analyse the relationship between these volatility measures and transhipment incidence. Finally, the authors compare the results per port group (in terms of transhipment incidence level). The statistical test results show that throughput volatility is much higher for transhipment hubs then for other container ports. This paper also points to some regional market-related elements that explain the observed differences in throughput volatility between port groups. This study can help port planners, managing bodies of ports and terminal operators in their decision-making in the field of container port development and commercial strategies.
Follow the link, until March 1, 2019 and get free access to the article.
Anyone who clicks on the link until March 1, 2019, will be taken to the final version of the article for free. No sign up or registration is needed – just click and read. Your comments and insights are most welcome.