Intermodal and rail transport in the Port of Hamburg has seen better years than in 2023. The German port’s financial and volume performance declined noticeably last year, and rail did not get away with it. Intermodal container transport recorded a 5.4 per cent volume decrease compared to 2022, while rail container transport declined by 3.1 per cent. A positive development concerned the increase of rail’s share in intermodal operations from 83.2 per cent to 85.2 per cent.

In particular, when it comes to intermodal transport, the Port of Hamburg saw volumes decrease from 1.69 million TEUs in 2022 to 1.6 million TEUs in 2023. Simultaneously, rail-oriented volumes dropped from 1.4 million TEUs in 2022 to 1.36 million TEUs.

The conversion of those figures into financial numbers showed increased revenue for intermodal operations. Specifically, a year-on-year increase of 4.2 per cent (from 595.4 million euros to 620.5 million euros) was recorded in revenue, a development that should be mainly attributed to the delegation of extra costs to the customers.

However, the decline becomes more apparent when looking at the EBIT results. In this case, the impact of decreased volumes was showcased with a 23.6 per cent drop from 95.3 million euros in 2022 to 72.9 million euros in 2023. Contributing to the decline were also the higher salary fees resulting from collective labour agreements, as well as the expansion of rail operations that did not bring the expected volumes and results, explained HHLA.

Overall negative year

In total, the intermodal and rail operations were not the only ones with a declining output in 2023. According to Angela Titzrath, HHLA’s CEO, “uncertain market conditions and the complicated status of global trade” were reflected in the company’s earnings.

Indicatively, the Group’s revenue decreased by 8.3 per cent (from 1,578.4 million euros to 1,446.8 million euros), while the EBIT decreased by an impressive 50.4 per cent to 109.4 million euros from 220.4 million euros the year before. Container throughput in the port’s terminals also dropped by 7.5 per cent.

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