Port of Antwerp scores 7th record year in a row

Port of Antwerp scores 7th record year in a row

- Strong basis for future economic success - Clear choices in favour of sustainability

In 2019 Port of Antwerp scored strong growth for the seventh year in a row, with the freight volume up 1.3% to 238 million tonnes. Although some segments are clearly under pressure due to economic reasons the port is making progress overall. But this progress is not just economic: in social terms the port is also making clear steps in favour of sustainability and mobility.

Growth Figures in 2019
In 2019 Port of Antwerp developed further as a major international port. Despite increasing tension in world trade it achieved strong growth this year once more in terms of total freight volume. Container freight in particular gained market share (up from 27.5% to 28.2%), while the dry bulk segment for its part saw its total volume expand by 3.4%. In breakbulk on the other hand, with steel as the main product, the consequences of turbulence in world were clearly felt, resulting in an overall contraction of 13%. In the liquid bulk segment too the volume was down, by 4.4%, due mainly to the slowdown in economic growth and fluctuations in oil prices.

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Launching Ramp towards the future
In 2019 a strong foundation was laid for the future success of Port of Antwerp and the economic activity with which it is closely linked, with large investments being announced in the chemical and logistics sectors. In addition to a record investment of 3 billion euros by INEOS in the Antwerp chemical cluster, this year also saw work starting on the ECLUSE steam distribution network. In addition ExxonMobil's Delayed Coker Unit went into operation, and there were other investments by players such as BASF, Borealis and Standic.

Emphasis on Sustainbility

Port of Antwerp CEO Jacques Vandermeiren explained: "We are using the technology and expertise that we have in the port to smooth the path towards becoming a carbon-neutral port. We are striving for a multi-fuel port where various sustainable fuels are available beside one another. In the near future we'll be experimenting with tugs powered by sustainable methanol hydrogen. Other interesting avenues that we are exploring are Carbon Capture & Utilisation and Carbon Capture & Storage, along with ways of re-using carbon in circular processes. It is our ambition to make the sustainable transition a reality, and Port of Antwerp has a pioneering role to play here."

Further efforrts towards better Mobility
Port of Antwerp continues to put great efforts into improving mobility, by more efficient consolidation of freight traffic, further digitisation of the port infrastructure and coordinated management of rail infrastructure.

"A growing port is a port in motion, and we aim to further extend the modal shift in future. Last year 24 million tonnes of freight was carried by rail. That's 7% of the total freight volume. We aim to double this to 15% by 2030. Pipelines too have an increasingly important role to play," Jacques Vandermeiren concluded.
About Port of Antwerp

As Europe's second-largest port, the Port of Antwerp is a major lifeline for the Belgian economy: more than 300 line services to over 800 destinations ensure global connectivity. The Port of Antwerp annually handles around 235 million tonnes of international maritime freight, and is home to Europe's largest integrated chemical cluster. The Port of Antwerp accounts, directly and indirectly, for a total of around 143,000 jobs and more than €20 billion added value.  

True to its mission 'a home port vital for a sustainable future’, Antwerp Port Authority aims to flexibly respond to a rapidly evolving maritime market, allowing the port to continue playing its role as a leading world port. The emphasis in this respect is on cooperation, adaptability, a strong focus on innovation and digitisation, and on sustainable added value, as well as on responsibility towards society. 

Antwerp Port Authority is a limited liability company of public law, with the City of Antwerp as sole shareholder. It employs over 1,500 people. Port alderman Annick De Ridder is chairman of the Board of Directors and Jacques Vandermeiren is CEO and President of the Executive Committee, which is responsible for the day-to-day management. www.portofantwerp.com  

The telephone number +32 492 15 41 39 is only for press inquiries. For other questions you can mail to communicatie@portofantwerp.com

Port of Antwerp
Havenhuis
Zaha Hadidplein 1
2030 Antwerp
Belgium