By Priti naik
One of the world’s largest port operators, DP World has recorded a 2.6% increase in gross container shipping volume in the fourth quarter of 2021. This shows a strong increase in the annual throughput that is expected to drive improved financial results.
The Dubai-based ports company handled 19.6 million 20-foot equivalent units, or TEUs, across its global portfolio of container terminals in the final quarter of 2021, up from 19 million TEUs in the same quarter a year ago, it said in a statement to Nasdaq Dubai on Monday. DP World’s Chairman and Chief Executive, Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem said, “As expected, growth rates moderated in the final quarter of 2021 as the new Covid variant [Omicron], inflation and supply chain bottlenecks impacted global growth.”
Global supply chain disruptions triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic will continue to linger for years until the backlog of cargo were cleared. The Covid-19 crisis highlighted significant challenges in the logistics sector, with many cargo owners struggling to find containers to move their goods to keep pace with demand and overcome labour disruptions. The terrible supply chain constrains have led to congestion and delays at ports, a shortage in shipping containers and a sharp rise in the cost of shipping goods.
The ports operator reported a 9.4% rise in 2021 container volumes, despite growth rates moderating in the fourth quarter, with all the regions it operates in reporting growth. Looking into 2022, the chairman said he expects the DP World portfolio to continue delivering growth and sees an encouraging start to the year.
The International Monetary Fund lowered its global economic growth forecast for this year, as Omicron continues to spread unabated and supply chain disruptions stoke inflation amid higher energy prices. The fund, which estimated the global economy would expand by 5.9% in 2021, revised down its 2022 output projections to 4.4%, half a percentage point lower than its estimate in October, it said in its latest World Economic Outlook in January.