PortEconomics co-director Theo Notteboom compiled a list of the top 15 container ports in the European Union (EU) in 2022 based on the container throughput in TEU and analyses the findings.
“While the ranking of the top 15 container ports in the European Union (EU) in 2022 based on the container throughput in TEU might be a mere distraction from other major port-related themes such as sustainability, energy transition, and supply chain resilience, the table provides more insight on the EU container port landscape:
The year 2022 brought a relatively strong traffic decline in most top 15 ports, with only Gioia Tauro and Marseille showing a growth above 2%. The top 15 ports combined handled 4.2% less compared to 2021 and 3.2% less than in 2019. The economic slowdown is reflected in the handled container volumes.
The container throughput of the top 7 ports remains below the volumes of pre-COVID-19 year 2019, while the ports in the second half of the list all managed to record growth in the period 2019-2022.
Three ports in the EU top 15 ended up with a total container throughput in 2022 below the TEU handled in the pre-financial crisis year 2007, i.e., Hamburg, Bremerhaven and Gioia Tauro.
La Spezia, Koper, and Klaipeda all handled more than 1 million TEU in 2022, while Gothenburg, Gdynia, Dublin, and Trieste are not far below the 1 million mark. Some of these ports might eventually join the EU top 15 in the coming years.
Note that the figures for #Q1 #2023 released so far show further (hefty) year-on-year traffic declines in quite a few ports: Rotterdam -11.6%; Antwerp-Bruges -5.7%; Valencia -10.5%; Algeciras -0.8%; Barcelona -12.3; etc. Most ports, however expect container volumes to recover somewhat in the second half of 2023.”