Containerised inbound freight has increased by 55% since 2000. Felixstowe and Southampton are the UK’s largest ports and over the last 10 years, there has been some subtle changes in where containers are unloaded:
- Felixstowe and Medway offloads a lower proportion of TEUs
- Volume shifted North (Tees & Grimsby) and to London ports
The growth in warehouses in the north of England would explain the increase in the Northern ports such as Grimsby and Teeside, whilst the increasing capacity from the opening of London Gateway could explain the reduction in Medway (Kent).
Over the last decade, most of the major UK ports have increased throughput even if their proportion of the UK total fell. Despite a £400m investment in a new deep-water dock so it could receive the largest container vessels, Liverpool’s share of inbound Twenty-Foot-Equivalents (TEUs) remains flat, although there is an underlying increase of 49% over the time period.
With Liverpool’s focus on transatlantic freight, perhaps it will be key to a post-Brexit world with increased links to the USA and Canada?