By A. Tsimplakis
Asian ports again dominated the top 10 spots worldwide in terms of container terminal traffic for 2016, occupying nine out of the first 10 places. Nevertheless, the very positive news for Greek interests is the improvement of the now Cosco-run Piraeus Port Authority (OLP) on the international rankings, as Greece's largest port leaped to 38th place, up from 43rd place in 2015.
The privatization of OLP is, to date, the biggest privatization that has actually been implemented in the crisis-battered country, with Chinese multinational Cosco purchasing a majority stake of OLP and assuming its management in August 2016.
The figures were supplied by Alpha Liner.
In a bid to continue its upward momentum, OLP's management is reportedly close to concluding an agreement with an international alliance of shippers that will guarantee Piraeus 700,000 teu in annual cargo, while acquiring services from the second biggest bloc in the world, the "Ocean Alliance", of which Cosco is a member.
Projections for the current year point to more than four million teu passing through piers II and III, up from 3.7 million in 2016.