Guayaquil does not lose its maritime power in Latin America, remaining in the position number 7 of the regional ranking of 2018, which is carried out annually by the Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLAC).
But the BES is not that. While in the ‘top’ of the total cargo movement the port of Guayaquil retains its position, it is the second in the group’s best performance, after Panama.
One of the reasons, large investments in the three most important port terminals in the city: Guayaquil Port Terminal (TPG), Contecon and Bananapuerto (Naportec), which handle 95.3% of containerized cargo, according to statistics from the Association of Private Port Terminals (Asotep), which differ, slightly, upwards, from the data of the ECLAC.
While the regional body 2’063.281 TEU’S (containers of 20 feet), Asotep of 2’135.397 TEU’S that moved last year the terminals enabled more Contecon (concessionaire of the Port Authority of Guayaquil).
The other reason is the good performance of the two most important sectors of the export economy: bananas and shrimp. And the increase in imports, after a tariff reduction.
Shrimp grew 15.6% and bananas 7.4% in volume, while imports increased 8.25% between 2017 and 2018, according to data from the Central Bank of Ecuador and the Association of Banana Exporters. For this year, an improvement in cocoa production will also have a weight in the port sector. Last year the gold price rose by only 3.7%.
2019 will be subject to the handling of containers with bananas, but the expectations are also placed on the development of the activity with the entrance of design vessels of up to 360 meters in length that will arrive from the next month, after the dredging of deepening of the avenue maritime to 12.50 meters draft, by the company Jan De Nul.
While the increase in container transfer in Latin America was 7.7% on average, Colón de Panamá grew 11.13% and Guayaquil 10.3%, according to ECLAC data.
“We must highlight that Port Authority of Guayaquil (APG) offers mechanisms that promote economic incentives to the productive sector of the country, boosting national production and foreign trade. With the deepening dredging of the access channel to the maritime and fluvial port terminals, public and private of Guayaquil, including its maintenance and operation, large vessels will be able to enter the Main Port of Ecuador quickly and safely, “says Damián Velasco, manager of APG, who highlights the development of a modern platform (satellite) that will be used in the coming months for the arrival of ships to all terminals.
According to ECLAC, in 2018 this activity increased 7,% in the 118 ports analyzed, with a total approximate volume of 53.2 million TEUs. Only 66 ports and port areas improved compared to the previous year.
The West Coast of South America had a progression of 7% in 2018, compared to 6% between 2016 and 2017. The Caribbean showed a growth of 12% in the total movement of containers.
Gulf of Mexico
The zone “Mexico Gulf grew 8% compared to 2017, and Mexico Pacific 11%. Panama showed growth in its Caribbean coast (11%) with respect to the total movement of the country, “says ECLAC.
The largest port in the region, Colón (Panama), which marked just over 4’324,000 TEUs last year. The largest in the world, Shanghai (China) moved 42,010,000 containers in 2018. (I)