War in Ukraine dampens container traffic in Europe

In February container traffic still showed a positive trend, but due to the war in Ukraine the tide has turned. The international trade sanctions and the blockade of Ukrainian ports reduced container traffic volumes in Europe ever since the early days of the invasion. This not only affects the Russian and Ukrainian ports, but also hub ports in the North Sea (serving the Baltic Sea) and the Mediterranean (serving the Black Sea).
Container traffic in the major Baltic Sea ports dropped sharply and was 11% below the volumes handled in March 2021. In February, there was still a year-on-year growth of 5%.


Among the major world ports represented in the index, the port of St. Petersburg showed the sharpest drop of traffic, having handled only a little more than half of the container volumes registered in March 2021.
Outside Europe, Oceania recorded the highest traffic losses. The flood in eastern Australia hit the port of Brisbane particularly hard, but the traffic of other Australian ports was also affected.

Further details on the development of major world ports is available in ISL’s Monthly Container Port Monitor.