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Review of Maritime Transport 2009

image of Review of Maritime Transport 2009
Against the background of a global financial crisis and economic downturn, growth in seaborne trade continued, albeit at a slower rate. Existing forecasts suggest that the outlook for seaborne trade is uncertain and that some challenging times lie ahead for shipping and international seaborne trade. These challenges are further compounded by other developments, including maritime security at sea and the need to address the climate change challenge. The Review of Maritime Transport examines trends in sea-borne trade and analyses the comparative performance of different geographic regions and countries. Every year, the Review of Maritime Transport gives attention to transport developments in a particular region. The focus in 2009 is on developments in Africa since 2006 when UNCTAD last reported on the region.

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Port and multimodal transport developments

This chapter covers container port throughput improvements in port performance, institutional change, port development and inland transportation. World container port throughput grew by an estimated 4 per cent to reach 506.9 million TEUs in 2008. Chinese mainland ports accounted for approximately 22.3 per cent of the total world container port throughput. In China, the Russian Federation and India, rail freight traffic measured in ton-kilometres showed growth rates of 3.5 per cent, 5 per cent and 8.4 per cent respectively for 2008. However, rail freight traffic declined in Europe by 5 per cent. In both Europe and the United States, rail freight declined significantly in the early months of 2009 when compared to the same period in the previous year.

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