The Port of Gdansk – the gateway of Europe opens for Asia

6 February 2018
In recent years the Port of Gdansk has significantly strengthened its position on the international arena. The Port of Gdansk Authority has the ambition for the port to become the most important transport facility in the region by 2020 through the dynamic development of container handling capacity. Therefore, Asian markets are key partners for the Port of Gdansk.
On year to year basis, the Port of Gdansk is a stronger competitor for deepwater ports in Western Europe. Due to long-term development plans it may become the biggest port of the Baltic Sea. At the moment, the port is in the top rankings in the region in terms of handling. In the first half of 2017, it had its best result handling over 18.5 M tons of cargo. This success is based largely on container handling capacity.
For this reason, the Port of Gdansk has been included in this year's World Top Container Ports 2017 ranking. This is mainly due to the development of DCT terminal, which made the Port of Gdansk one of the biggest container hubs in the Baltic Sea basin. Much cargo which used to be handled in the North Sea ports is now handled in Gdańsk.
The increasing significance of the Port of Gdansk is, among other things, the result of Asian countries (especially China) acquiring more interest in East-Central European markets. Asia is strongly oriented on cooperation with this part of Europe since trade between these regions is constantly increasing and the Port of Gdansk is the leader due to regular container connections and competitive handling fees. For example, the cost of shipping of one forth-foot container from Chengdu to Łódź via Gdańsk is 4371 USD. If shipping is done via, for example, Hamburg the cost is 6523 USD and 6825 USD via Antwerp. Therefore, the Port of Gdansk with its high quality of service and access to well-developed overland trails is growing in importance on the European-Asian trade map.
Strong position of the Port is also reflected in tightening relationships between the Port of Gdansk Authority and major entities on the international port services market. In October 2017 the Port of Gdansk signed a declaration of cooperation with 12 ports of global importance. Apart from Gdańsk, these were Antwerp, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Hamburg, Incheon, Klang, Sohar, Zebruggee, Rotterdam, Colombo and Shenzhen. This document aims at tightening the cooperation in order to constantly improve and develop the electronic platform of data exchange. The process will have a significant impact on the improvement of cargo flow on container shipping routes between Asia and Europe.

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In the next few years the position of the Port of Gdansk will be strengthened even more. The creation of so called New Silk Road, where Gdańsk will be the last link of this Asian-European supply chain, will play an important role. It has to be noted that China is at the moment the third most important trade partner for the Port of Gdansk, taking into consideration the country of origin and destinations of cargo handled in the port's quays.
In order to meet the growing demand for port services, especially container handling, the Port of Gdansk Authority is planning to construct Central Port. It will be one of the biggest deepwater facilities in the region. Central Port will make Poland the northern gateway of Europe through which most goods imported into the European Union will pass. The Port of Gdansk Authority is planning to complete the investment by 2028. The preparation of necessary documentation will begin in 2019 followed by the first stage of development in 2020.

Lukasz Greinke, President of the Board of the Port of Gdansk Authority

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