The “new normal” creates opportunities if you know where to look
APM Terminals’ Chief Commercial Officer Richard Mitchell spoke April 12th at the opening session of the Twelfth Annual Global Liner Conference in London about the container port industry and opportunities in 2010.
“The port industry and liner industry are closely intertwined and facing extraordinary times. In the good old days, markets were growing 10-15% every year. Last year, we witnessed the first ever decline in global container port volumes – estimated at 10%. Volumes were hit in the developed world and in Eastern Europe, while Africa, the Indian Subcontinent and the Middle East fared best. Now – in the new normal – markets will grow slower. The opportunities are different now, there’s more uncertainty and slower growth in mature markets compared to emerging markets”, observed Mitchell. “Emerging markets offer higher growth opportunities than developed markets in 2010 since their decline in 2009 was not as severe – and they’re expected to recover faster. It’s also important to note – emerging markets have the highest levels of potential growth as the wealth of individuals improves in emerging nations over time”, he added.
APM Terminals operates a Global Terminal Network of 50 ports in 34 countries with 18,000 employees. This diversified portfolio is located in both mature and emerging markets, enabling the company to better handle the impact of economic cycles. In 2009, 37% of the company’s revenues were generated in emerging markets in Asia, India, Africa and Brazil as outdated port infrastructures needed upgrading and operational excellence initiatives gained traction.