Setting a new global throughput record, DP World handled 70.1 million teu across its worldwide network of container terminals in 2017, with volumes up by around 9.7% on a like-for-like basis compared with 2016. As a result the group outperformed the container terminal market generally, which Drewry Maritime estimates grew by 6% worldwide last year.
DP World’s facilities in the UAE, primarily based around Jebel Ali port, handled 15.4 million teu in 2017, up by 4% compared to the previous year. DP World chairman and chief executive officer, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, commented: “We are pleased to see a stable performance in the UAE, as volumes continued to grow in the fourth quarter of 2017 amidst uncertainty in the region. The performance across our other terminals in the Middle East and Africa remains strong, in addition to Europe and the Americas.”
The group is anticipating a healthy year of growth in 2018, when it will benefit from full year contributions from investments in Yarimca (Turkey), Saint John (Canada), Limassol (Cyprus) and Berbera (Somaliland) which came on stream in 2017.
Last year DP World also took into use 1.5 million teu of new capacity at its flagship Jebel Ali port in Dubai. The port’s 2017 throughput of over 15 million teu is expected to consolidate its position within the world’s top 10 container facilities. The total annual capacity now available at Jebel Ali is around 19.5 million teu, DP World reports, creating plenty of scope to accommodate further growth in business.