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The Transshipment in Russian Ports Grew 9% in February - the Russian Commercial Port Association

March 04, 2010

According to the Russian Commercial Port Association (RCPA), stevedoring companies start to summarize February operations; the total transshipment growth in ports is on the level of January – about 9% comparing to the similar period of the last year.

“During the crisis, ports maintained the cargo turnover thanks to the oil and petrochemicals export. Today there in not considerable growth of its volume comparing to the last February. It is time to increase the volume of transshipment of such cargoes which previously decreased most of all. They are containerized cargoes above all,” said the representative of RCPA.

Grain demand is on the same level as in the last February, said Igor Pavensky, head of the department of the market analysis of Rusagrotrans. Novorossiysk Commercial Sea Port, OJSC (RTS: NMTP) (NMTP), is the grain gate of the country. About 900 thousand tons of grain were handled there. The neighboring Tuapse Commercial Sea Port (TMTP) handled about 71 thousand tons. The NMTP grain turnover grew only 13% comparing to February, 2009, while the same factor of TMTP grew 4.6 times. “This can be explained by commissioning of a grain terminal and well-coordinated work of the entire port,” mentions the expert.

He expects the demand in March is to be on the same level as last year, but not less dynamic – burst of shippers’ activity falls at March, 2009. The Novorossiysk port is expected to transship about 1 mln. tons of grain while the Tuapse port – about 90 thousand tons.

The turnover of containerized cargoes is gradually recovers. The First Container Terminal, CJSC (FCT, compising National Container Company, OOO), one of the most advanced container terminals, handled about 80 thousand TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) comparing 63 thousand TEU in the same period of the last year. “Since February is short, March figures are to be better. The peak of shippers’ activity falls at the beginning of May,” reported Sergey Ivanov, Marketing Director of FCT to Interfax.

Novorossiysk Nodal Transporting and Forwarding Company, OJSC, another NCC terminal, handled 28.2 thousand TEU in January and February which is 35% more than in the same period of 2009.

In February, iron ore and coking coal demand decreased due to decreased activity of China, being the major consumer of these materials. “A week before Chinese New Year and a week after, the raw material prices are usually falling just like procurement. However, the market is active again and this trend is going to last,” believes Vladimir Zhukov, analysts of FG Nomura.

“But main facilities for transshipment of Russian exportable coal – ports Vostochny, Nakhodka, Murmansk and Saint-Petersburg – are to demonstrate small increase comparing to last February,” believes Nikolay Sosnovsky, analysts of FC Uralsib (RTS: USBN). “Power-generating coal is in good demand in Asia, export volumes of coking coal can also increase due to the good market condition,” said the analysts.

Export of oil and petrochemicals, cargoes sustainably transshipped in the crisis, decreased in February against experts’ expectations. Primorks port, key oil port of the country, decreased volumes of oil transshipment by 12.7% per day as against February, 2009, having transshipped 4,799 thousand tons. Novorossiysk, the next large port, decreased transshipment volumes down to 3,271 thousand tons as against 3,466 thousand tons in February, 2009.

“In my opinion, difference in export delivery depends on more favorable terms of delivery to oil refineries and petrochemical marketing. The attraction of oil export in comparison with its refinery will depend on price fluctuation and, including, the formula of the Federal Antimonopoly Service for petrochemical price to be published in the near future,” reported Vitaly Kryukov, analysts of Kapital Investment Group.


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