Home » Breaking News, Ports/Terminals » PSA leads world’s top container terminal operators

The ranking of the world’s top five container terminal operators remains unchanged, but a rise in merger and acquisition activities may soon rearrange their positions, according to a UK-based shipping consultancy.

In Drewry Maritime Research’s latest Annual Review of Global Container Terminal Operators report, PSA International of Singapore again topped the list of leading operators in 2011, ahead of Hong Kong-based Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH).

But the margin has narrowed to just over 4 million 20-foot-equivalent units (TEUs) after PSA divested itself of its interests in HPH’s Hong Kong terminals, according to Drewry’s assessment. PSA handled 47.6 million TEUs in 2011 for an 8.1 percent world throughput share, while HPH registered 43.4 million TEUs handled for a 7.4 percent market share.

In third and fourth spots are closely matched DP World (33.1 million TEUs handled for a 5.6 percent market share) and APM Terminals (32 million TEUs handled and a 5.4 percent share).

The COSCO group comes in at fifth place with a much lower throughout of 15.4 million TEUs for a 2.6 percent share of the global market.

The big four operators collectively accounted for 26.5 percent of world container port throughput, but this was down slightly on the previous year due to the emergence of other large international and local players.

China Shipping Terminal Development has entered the Drewry league table for the first time, with its interests in 15 terminals in China and the U.S. placing it in seventh position.

Terminal Investment Limited topped 12 million TEUs in 2011, making it the sixth largest global terminal operator.

“The league table remains dynamic as merger and acquisition activity continues in the sector,” Drewry said. APM Terminals has just taken a significant stake in Russian operator Global Ports Investments with a US$860 million deal that will improve APMT’s ranking next year, it added.

There are also speculations about the possible sale of the terminal portfolios of certain major shipping lines, including CMA CGM’s Terminal Link.

“After a lull in M&A activity in the sector brought about by the global slowdown in 2009, activity levels are building up again and we expect to see more major deals taking place,” said Neil Davidson, Drewry’s senior advisor for ports. “The ownership and ranking of the world’s major terminal operators may be significantly different in a year’s time.”

Rounding off the top 10 list are Evergreen in eighth place, Eurogate in ninth, and HHLA in tenth.


Photo: Ariaski

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