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Port of London Passes 50 Million Tonne Barrier- Again

Returning a 6% growth in annual tonneage throughput for 2001, the Port of London has broken through the 50 million tonnes mark again, only one year after the closure of the Shell Haven oil refinery.

Figures released by the Port of London Authority (PLA) show that total throughput was 50.7 million, up 2.8 million tonnes on the throughput of 47.9 million tonnes in 2000.

The highlights include:

  • Fuel traffic up 6%. Oil traffic also increased on the previous year.
  • Non-fuel traffic had a good year - up 5%, an increase of 1.6 million tonnes.
  • Aggregates and cement traffic both had a good year as a result of the construction of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link. Aggregates traffic was 1.4 million tonnes (20%) and cement 217 thousand tonnes (45%) above that handled in 2000.
  • Unitised trade up 3% up on the previous year (275 thousand tonnes).
  • Cereal throughput 23% lower than previous year, mainly because of poor harvests.
  • Iron, steel and other metals trade remained virtually static.
  • Vehicle traffic increased, with Ford introducing a third daily car carrying ship.

“These figures demonstrate that the Port of London is making excellent progress and has a great future serving the country’s main markets of London and south-east England,” said PLA Chief Executive, Steve Cuthbert.

“While there were some volume reductions, mainly in cereals and forest products, gains in other areas across the range of commodities handled by the various terminals that make up the Port of London shows the strength in the diversity of the Port.”

“With its excellent road and rail links, the Port of London is within only two hours travelling time of 30% of the UK’s population.  The Port is the gateway to these key markets.”