The Philippines’ total cargo throughput continues to improve, reaching 132.36 million metric tons (mmt) for the first eight months of the year, up 2.96% from 128.554 mmt in the same period last year, advance data from the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) showed.
Foreign cargoes contributed 61.5% or 81.406 mmt to the total, a 3.94% growth over last year’s 78.319 mmt.
PPA took note of the 3.07% rise in exports shipments at the end of August with river sand, magnetite sand, crude minerals, nickel ore, limestone ore, clinker and slag, and coconut oil and copra, fruits and fish putting in an impressive performance.
Domestic cargoes accounted for 50.954 mmt of the aggregate, inching up 1.43% from 50.235 mmt year-on-year.
Out of the 24 PMOs, 15 showed substantial volume increase. Tagbilaran racked up the most growth of 45.10% in the first eight months of 2013, powered by greater domestic shipment of aggregates, heavy equipment and construction materials, and exports of limestone ores.
Ormoc and San Fernando also showed significant increases with 42.42% and 29.84%, respectively.
Ormoc saw more domestic shipments of copra and coco products, imports of fertilizer raw materials and exports of sulphuric acid and copper while San Fernando handled increased import of coal and export of sand.
But Surigao emerged as the top PMO performer in terms of cargo volume, handling 14.79% or 19.58 mmt of the throughput nationwide, surpassing the total throughput of the entire Port District Office (PDO) Visayas and PDO Southern Mindanao, according to PPA.
Surigao bested even Manila International Container Terminal in terms of foreign cargo handled. It should be noted though that MICT, operated by International Container Terminal Services, Inc, is a single port while Surigao consists of several government and private ports.
Container throughput remained upbeat, up 1.61% to 3.461 million twenty-equivalent units (TEU) from 3.207 million TEUs in 2012.
Foreign containerized cargoes improved 2.15% to 2.084 million TEUs from 2.04 million TEUs although domestic containerized cargoes eased by 0.80% to 1.378 million TEUs from 1.367 million TEUs.
MICT continues to handle the largest volume of foreign containerized cargoes with 1.180 TEUs followed by South Harbor with 619,212 TEUs, and Davao with 167,928 TEUs.
North Harbor remains the top handler for domestic containerized cargoes with 600,894 TEUs.
Private ports contributed 62.41% to the total cargo volume, handling 82.60 mmt while government ports accounted for 37.59% or 49.76 mmt.
Shipcalls for the first eight months of 2013 increased 4.23% to 242,260 from 232,436.
Domestic shipcalls grew 4.43% to 235,296 from 225,313. Foreign shipcalls declined 2.23% to 6,964 from the same period last year’s 7,123.
Passengers using the country’s ports also grew 5.52% to 36.089 million from 34.202 million in 2012.