Stable Year for Marseille Fos Port
French cargo and cruise port Marseille Fos had a relatively stable year in 2018 with traffic of more than 81 million tonnes, up 1%.
The performances included a seventh consecutive year of growth in container traffic, which rose 2% for 1.4 million teu, and a 12% increase in dry bulks at 15.2MT. Meanwhile cruise numbers leapt 15% to 1.7 million passengers.
Infrastructure development and maintenance spending of €60 million featured further logistics park expansion. Alongside this, agreements were reached on major industrial implantations.
The 2019 capex budget of €85m has earmarked €58m for development projects. These include ongoing work to link the two Fos container terminals via a quay extension, which is due for handover in April 2020.
With conventional traffic – mainly steel products breakbulk - down 11% on 2.4MT, the general cargo total was driven by container volumes amounting to 13MT. This was supported by ro-ro throughput including 203,000 trailers (+1%) and 214,700 import/export cars (+2%).
Box traffic was helped by new Canada and Middle East services from Maersk and the deployment of 14,000 teu ships on the MD2 Alliance, boosting service capacity by 45%.
In 2018 Marseille’s fast-growing shiprepair facilities drydocked 99 vessels (+1%) and handled 133 afloat repairs (+25%). Capacity was enhanced with the October 2017 reopening of the giant Drydock No.10, the Mediterranean’s largest and third biggest in the world.
At 465 metres long and 85 metres wide, it is aimed primarily at mega-cruiseships but also the gas carrier, bulker, container and offshore markets. Costa Cruises has a one-third stake in repairer Chantier Naval de Marseille (CNdM), which also operates drydocks 8 and 9.
Work is now due to start on a 5.5 hectare site dedicated to the repair of large pleasure vessel repairs, which follows last year’s agreement between the port authority and Monaco Marine.