This year, the port of Rotterdam handled 328 million tons of goods, 2% more than in 2002. This surpassed the record year of 2000 by 6 million tons. The provisional figures were clarified by Willem Scholten, chairman of the Port Management, during a press meeting today. He appeared more than satisfied. "Record figures for the total, liquid bulk, RoRo and containers. In containers, we are the first non-Asian port to pass the 7 million TEU mark. Massive investments are still being made, throughout all port sectors. The Second Maasvlakte has come a lot closer. The Municipal Port Management is to be corporatized, and will have more commercial clout as a result. All in all, a fine year, during which the basis was laid for further development in the future too."
The increase can be attributed to the throughput of agribulk (+10.7%), coal (+2.1%), other dry bulk
(+8.4%), crude oil (+4.6%), other liquid bulk (+4.4%), roll on / roll off
(+10.8%), other general cargo (+12.6%) and containers (+7.4%). The number of containers handled increased by 8%, from 6.5 million TEU in 2002 to 7 million TEU. The handling of ores and scrap (-3.7%) and petroleum products and petcokes (-21.5%) declined. Total bulk remained constant, the increase was due to the total for general cargo: 8.3%. Total imports increased by 2.4%, or 6 million tons, to 255 million tons. Exports remained virtually unchanged (- 0.5%) at 73 million tons.