The latest port ranking table published by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL) shows that container traffic in 2016 dropped by 0.9%, reinforcing the overall negative trend in recent years.
Regional traffic fell by an average of 6% in 2012, 1.3% in 2013, 2.4% in 2014, and 2.5% in 2015.
The downturn in 2016 was due to negative growth mainly in five countries: Brazil (-4.4%), Panama (-9.1%), Colombia (-3.6%), Argentina (-6.1%) and the Bahamas (-14.3%).
Other countries help mitigate the overall downturn by posting positive growth. These were Mexico (3.2%), Chile (4.8%), Peru (8.4%), Ecuador (4.5%), the Dominican Republic (8.3%), Guatemala (8.8%), Costa Rica (7.3%) and Uruguay (9.5%).
Overall traffic in the region amounted to 47.5m teu for 2016, with the top 40 ports accounting for 90% of total throughput. A further 100 ports handled the remaining 4.4m teu.
South American East Coast ports reported a 3.7% decrease, compared with just 0.7% in 2015, due mostly to declining traffic in Brazil and Argentina. In contrast, those on the West Coast reported an increase of 4.5%, mainly thanks to ports in Chile, Peru and Ecuador. Central America turned positive growth of 4.5% in 2015 to negative growth of 3.5% last year, mostly due to a 9.1% drop in Panama.
Source: Port StrategyPrevious Next
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