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Hong Kong cargo, container throughput declines in Q3

  • Cargo throughput decreased by 12.4% to 55.5 million tonnes in the third quarter of 2021 year-on-year
  • For the first nine months, cargo throughput decreased by 15.0% to 159.7 million tonnes year-on-year
  • In the third quarter, the port of Hong Kong handled 4.64 million TEUs of containers, a decrease of 1.2% compared with the third quarter of 2020
  • For the first nine months of 2021, the port handled 13.35 million TEUs of containers, an increase of 0.3% compared with the first nine months of 2020

The Port of Hong Kong saw declines in total cargo and container throughput as well as vessel calls in the third quarter of 2021 from the same period a year ago, according to the latest government data.

Cargo throughput decreased by 12.4% year-on-year to 55.5 million tonnes in the third quarter. Inward port cargo decreased by 19.3% to 34.6 million tonnes, while outward port cargo increased by 2.2% to 20.9 million tonnes, the Census and Statistics Department reported.

Cargo imports decreased by 31.6% in the third quarter of 2021 to 17.9 million tonnes, while inward transhipment remained virtually unchanged at 16.8 million tonnes. Cargo exports (including domestic exports and re-exports) and outward transhipment increased by 4.8% and 1.3% year-on-year to 5.1 million tonnes and 15.8 million tonnes, respectively.

Double-digit increases were recorded in inward port cargo loaded in Indonesia and Vietnam in the third quarter year-over-year. On the other hand, double-digit decreases were recorded in the tonnage of inward port cargo loaded in Taiwan and China. For outward port cargo, double-digit increases were recorded in outward port cargo discharged in Taiwan, Korea, Thailand and the US.

Also in the third quarter of 2021, the port of Hong Kong handled 4.64 million TEUs of containers, a decrease of 1.2% compared with the third quarter of 2020. Laden containers increased by 0.4% to 3.94 million TEUs, while empty containers decreased by 9.4% to 0.70 million TEUs.

For inward laden containers, imports and inward transhipment decreased by 0.2% and 4.0% in the third quarter of 2021 compared with the third quarter of 2020 to 0.57 million TEUs and 1.45 million TEUs, respectively. For outward laden containers, exports and outward transhipment increased by 10.4% and 2.0% to 0.51 million TEUs and 1.42 million TEUs, respectively.

For the first nine months of 2021, total port cargo throughput decreased by 15.0% compared with the first nine months of 2020 to 159.7 million tonnes. Inward port cargo decreased by 22.2% to 100.9 million tonnes, while outward port cargo increased by 0.8% compared to 58.8 million tonnes.

Cargo imports decreased by 35.0% to 53.4 million tonnes, while inward transhipment cargo increased by 0.1% to 47.5 million tonnes. Cargo exports increased by 4.0% to 14.5 million tonnes, while outward transhipment decreased by 0.2% to 44.4 million tonnes.

For the first nine months of 2021, the port of Hong Kong handled 13.35 million TEUs of containers, an increase of 0.3% compared with the first nine months of 2020. Laden containers increased by 0.6% to 11.15 million TEUs, while empty containers decreased by 1.1% to 2.20 million TEUs. Among laden containers, inward containers decreased by 1.1% to 5.81 million TEUs, while outward containers increased by 2.5% to 5.34 million TEUs.

Laden container imports and inward transhipment decreased by 3.1% and 0.3% in the first nine months of 2021 compared with the first nine months of 2020 to 1.62 million TEUs and 4.19 million TEUs, respectively. Laden container exports and outward transhipment increased by 2.1% and 2.6% to 1.30 million TEUs and 4.04 million TEUs, respectively.

The number of ocean vessel arrivals decreased by 23.1% to 4,137 in the third quarter of 2021 from a year ago, with the total capacity also decreasing by 30.7% to 62.8 million net tons.

The number of ocean vessel arrivals decreased by 31.0% to 12,253 in the first nine months of 2021 compared with the first nine months of 2020, with the total capacity also decreasing by 36.2% to 181.6 million net tons.

Photo by Manson Yim on Unsplash

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