PORT OF KIEL right on target for growth
Cargo handling up 20 % to record 3.7 million tons. The port of Kiel is very much on target for growth and has posted its best half-year results to date.
In the first six months of 2017 the port’s varied facilities handled 3.7 million tons of goods, topping the total in the same period of the previous year by 20 %. Dr Dirk Claus, Managing Director of the Port of Kiel (SEEHAFEN KIEL GmbH & Co. KG) said: “the taking into service of the SCA Logistics Centre in Kiel’s Ostuferhafen has already shown it is having a lasting impact on growth and providing the planned impetus which justifies our investment.”
Some 400,000 tons of high-value timber products were handled and stored for new customers Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget (SCA) and Iggesund Paperboard in the first half of the year. “This very good result is all the more significant because Kiel was also able to post increases in its other handling sectors – ferry traffic and bulk goods”, said Dirk Claus. Even without taking the SCA traffic into consideration, Kiel’s handling performance still rose by a remarkable 7.6 %.
In the first half year of 2017 bulk goods handling rose by a gratifying 18.7 % to well over 550,000 tons. Alongside fuels like coal and oils, significant increases were also posted in the handling of building materials, grain and scrap metals. In the ferry sector, the Stena Line in particular upped turnover – by 12.8 % - and is ranked number two on the list of Kiel’s most important freight customers after DFDS.
Surprisingly, trade with Russia, which has been severely disrupted in the past few years by trade restrictions, also showed a slight revival. “We are now creating additional warehousing capacities in the Ostuferhafen, in order to stabilise the positive development in trade with Russia”, said Dirk Claus.
Currently taking shape in the immediate vicinity of the berth used by ships on the St Petersburg route, is the 5,000 m² Shed 12, planned as a warehouse for sawn timber. In container business, which is of only minor significance in Kiel, 13,400 TEUs were handled – an increase of 19.3 %.
Intermodal rail/ship handling continued to expand in the first six months of the year with the inauguration of a weekly direct train shuttle between Kiel and Trieste and the introduction of an additional departure to Verona. For the first time ever, the rail facilitities at the Schwedenkai Terminal and in the Ostuferhafen loaded more than 16,000 consignments onto rail wagons – a plus of 10%.
Dirk Claus said: “We are already working to further increase performance at the Schwedenkai Terminal by adding another rail track. That will mean that we are able to handle the biggest part of the growth in sea port hinterland transport on the railways.”
In the passenger sector, 913,000 travellers were handled – an increase of 3.1 % over the same period last year. The biggest increases were recorded by the Stena Line on its route to Gothenburg in Sweden, followed by the route to Klaipeda in Lithuania.
Most passengers travelled with the ships of Color Line from Kiel to Oslo. In the cruise shipping sector, 65 cruise ship calls were made up to June 30th and well over 200,000 passengers registered.