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Skip Navigation · Home · Port traffic has hit historic records in the first half of the year
Port traffic has hit historic records in the first half of the year

277.7 million tons moved between January and June 2018

Port traffic has hit historic records in the first half of the year


  • With a 6% increase, the total traffic records of 2017 have been surpassed
  • With more than 73 million tons in transit, 1 in 4 moved tons were sent onto third countries
  • Cruise ship passenger traffic grew by 23.5%, to more than 4.4 million passengers



03-08-2018 (Ministry of Public Works). Port traffic continues to increase and make historical records, thus reacting to the fact that the Spanish economy is performing well. The 277.7 million tons moved over the first half of 2018 therefore represents an increase of more than 6% on 2017, breaking the record set last year which reached 261.8 million.
At 45.3 million, the record of June 2018 was also the best month in history.


General goods, as classified by their presentation, have now became the largest group of goods transiting through our ports at 133 million tons, which is an 8.2% increase compared to last year. This represents 48% of the total, ¾ of which (94.6 million tons) travelled in containers


Bulk liquids, being the second largest group of goods, with more than 89 million tons, increased by 3.5%, and solid bulk at 49.5 million tons, grew by 6.1% compared to the first half of 2017.


Spain continues to be significant as a logistics platform for intercontinental maritime traffic, for both mainland ports and those of the Canary Islands, which is clear from the nearly 73 million tons of goods in transit (+12.7%). This means that 1 out of every 4 tons moving through our ports comes from/is going to another port/country. The alternative to boats afforded by long overland journeys continues to gain in popularity, to the point where roll-on roll-off traffic (trucks loaded up with goods at ports) continues to grow at a rate of 6%. More than 30.7 million tons have now been transported this way.


In terms of passenger traffic, the regular lines between the mainland and the islands, as well as between the islands, transport more than 9.9 million passengers, which is 3.8% more than last year. However, in line with the increase in tourists seen by cruise ships over recent years, the number of cruise ship passengers has increased by 23.5%, meaning more than 4.4 million cruise ship passengers.


In Autonomous Communities, the ports of general interest in the State of Andalusia moved the most goods, at 80.2 million tons, thanks to the Port Authority of Algeciras, which moved more than 67% of goods. At 53.8 million tons, this also makes it the national leader. The ports of Motril and Almería also stand out due to the significant increases they saw of +33% and 11.2%, respectively.


The following largest are the ports of the Autonomous Community of Catalonia, with 49.9 million tons. Barcelona, with 33.8 million tons is the national port that has experienced the second largest amount of growth at +17.8%.


The Autonomous Community of Valencia, with 49.1 million tons, is the third largest, putting the Port Authority of Valencia in second place of the national ranking with more than 37.3 million tons.


The ports of general interest of the Canary Islands, along with the Port Authorities of Las Palmas and S.C. Tenerife, moved 19.9 million tons of goods and more than 1.3 million cruise ship passengers. The Autonomous Community had the largest number of cruise ship passengers.


The Autonomous Community of the Basque Country, with the ports of general interest of Bilbao and Pasaia, moved 19.3 million tons, with a combined increased of 11.5%, thus matching the national average.


The five Galician ports of general interest moved 18.3 million tons, with the largest increases being seen in the ports of A Coruña and Marín & Ría de Pontevedra.


The port of Cartagena, the only port of general interest in Murcia, moved 16.4 million tons, which put it in 5th place in the national ranking.


The ports of Avilés and Gijón in the Principality of Asturias moved 11.9 million tons, thus highlighting Avilés' significant increase of +10.4%.


2.8 million tons were moved in Cantabria, the Port of Santander, which represents an increase of 13.1%.


The ports of the Autonomous Cities of Ceuta and Melilla moved 1.2 million and 438,616 tons, respectively.


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