PPA ports registered 6.5% drop in cargo throughput in first nine months compared to the same period last year
Container volume down 15.9% in first three quarters from the same period last year
Ship calls fell 33.2% in the first nine months of 2020 while passenger traffic contracted 66.2%
Philippine ports saw cargo volumes decline 6.5% in the first nine months of 2020 to 188.3 million metric tons (mt), down from 201.5 million mt in the same period last year, data from the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) showed.
Of the total volumes handled by ports under PPA’s jurisdiction from January to September 2020, 63% were foreign and 37% domestic cargoes.
Domestic cargoes dropped 10.4% to 69.6 million mt in the first nine months of the year from 77.7 million mt in the same period last year.
Foreign cargoes likewise decreased, down 4.1% to 118.7 million mt from 123.8 million mt last year.
Exports fell 14.6% to 41.7 million mt from 48.8 million mt.
Import volumes had a better showing, with 77.0 million mt in the first nine months of 2020, or 2.8% higher than the 74.9 million mt handled last year.
In terms of region, Luzon ports accounted for 56% of the total cargo volume, followed by Mindanao ports with 30% share and Visayas ports with 14%.
Cargo volume at Luzon ports dropped 5.1% to 105.1 million mt in the first nine months of 2020 from 110.7 million mt last year. Visayas ports recorded the biggest contraction, dropping 16.7% to 25.8 million mt from 31.0 million mmt.
Ports in Mindanao handled 57.4 million mt in the first nine months of the year, 4% lower than the 59.8 million mt serviced in 2019.
PPA earlier said it expected ship calls and cargo volumes to decline amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, which has significantly affected global and domestic trade, restricted movements of goods and people, and caused economic slowdowns worldwide.
Container throughput down 15.9%
Container throughput at PPA ports reached 4.9 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) in the first three quarters of the year, 15.9% down from last year’s 5.8 million TEUs.
Domestic containers declined 15.3% to 2 million TEUs from 2.4 million TEUs, while foreign containers dipped 16.3% to 2.9 million TEUs from 3.5 million TEUs.
The number of ship calls fell 33.2% in the first nine months of the year to 245,585 compared to 367,837 vessel calls in the same period in 2019.
Domestic ship calls declined 33.9% to 237,650 from 359,347 vessel calls while foreign ship calls decreased 6.5% to 7,935 from 8,490 vessel calls.
Passenger traffic contracted 66.2% to 21.3 million passengers from 62.9 million passengers in the first nine months of 2019.
Disembarking passengers were 66.3% less at 10.7 million from 31.8 million, while embarking passengers declined 66% to 10.5 million from 30.9 million. Cruise passengers had the biggest decrease of 81.2% to just 31,344, down from 166,509 cruise passengers from January to September last year.
Roll-on/roll-off (Ro-Ro) traffic recorded a 36.3% decline to 3.7 million from 5.7 million in the first three quarters of 2019.
Inbound Ro-Ro traffic fell 36.1% to 1.8 million from 2.9 million while outbound Ro-Ro traffic dropped 36.6% to 1.8 million from 2.9 million.
PPA has jurisdiction over majority of public and private ports in the country, except those under separate agencies such as Cebu Port Authority and Freeport authorities. – Roumina Pablo