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Panamanian ports see 5.3pc growth in 2020 to 7.3 million TEU

PANAMA port activity rose 5

27 January 2021 - 19:00
PANAMA port activity rose 5.3 per cent last year while also registering the highest volume ever of 7.73 million TEU despite lockdowns from the Covid crisis, reports Colchester's Seatrade Maritime News.

Every terminal posted growth except for Evergreen's Colon Container Terminal (CCT) on the Atlantic side which suffered a 8.9 per cent fall to 714,441 TEU.



Manzanillo International Terminal-Panama (MIT) witnessed an increase of 4.7 per cent to 2.67 million TEU.



'During 2020, container volumes at MIT finished higher than 2019, exceeding 2.6 million TEU, driven primarily by transshipment traffic. However, local container and ro-ro cargo volume pushed financial results lower than the year before. We are optimistic that the local market will continue to rebound during 2021, but we are not anticipating significant overall growth this year,' said MIT general manager Stacy Hatfield.



Meanwhile, Balboa volumes grew 1.7 per cent to 1.96 million TEU, and Cristobal volume increased 2.4 per cent to 1.08 million TEU. PSA-Panama passed the million TEU mark with 1.20 million TEU, up 23.6 per cent compared to 2019.



'This result was mainly driven by the strategic location that Panama has in this area. During the beginning of the pandemic, almost every country around the world (including Panama) was in lockdown, which inevitably shut down factories and offices,' said PSA-Panama general manager Alessandro Cassinelli.



With the gradual but uneven reopening of the factories, shipping, in general, has seen a surge in volumes. Factories reopened were exporting, but in certain cases, receivers could not receive the goods. Hence the pivotal role of Panama and PSA,' he said.


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