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            october 20, 2019

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Baltic boost for shortsea shipping


Economic growth in the southeast Baltic will fuel the need for shortsea shipping services, with a predicted quadrupling of container volumes between now and 2020, writes Roger Hailey.
Maritime consultant Bill Burns told the European Shortsea Congress in Dublin that a "medium-case growth scenario" for the southeast Baltic will see present day volumes of 3.5m teu rise to 9.2m teu by 2015 and to 12.4m teu by 2020. He also sees more scope for increased intra-European and feeder volumes rather than direct deepsea traffic into the Baltic region. "You may see some larger ships coming into the Baltic but this will be more to do with the cascade effect of repositioning older and smaller tonnage [from other trades]," he said.
But, it may make more sense to operate a 1,500 teu ship than a 3,000 teu ship because the Baltic trade "could be one of those cases where shipping"s economies of scale do not kick in," he said. "There has been a rapid growth in the Baltic and Scandinavian sector since 2000, which has been dominated by shortsea and feeder traffic. I expect that this market growth will continue and will present many opportunities for shortsea shipping in the future."  

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