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PSA International 2009 results hit by 'unprecedented' trade contraction

PSA International 2009 results hit by 'unprecedented' trade contraction

Singapore: PSA International saw revenues decline by 12.7% to S$3.83bn in 2009, on container volumes down 9.9% to 56.9m TEUs. Net profit fell by only 6.1% to S$976m, however, a comparatively smaller decline that the company attributed to "prudent control of capital expenditure and effective cost-cutting measures implemented since the end of 2008."         

PSA's flagship Singapore terminal saw a 13.1% decrease to 25.1m TEUs but remained the world's busiest container port. Throughput at the group's 27 other port projects in 15 countries was down 7.1% to 31.8m TEUs. PSA said the smaller decline internationally reflected both its presence in countries (e.g. China) less affected by the global crisis and the contribution of container volumes from new port start-ups in Chennai and Vietnam.       

Group ceo Mr Eddie Teh pointed out that 2009 had been "a year of unprecedented hardship and challenges for the port and shipping industries," resulting in PSA suffering its first ever decline in containers handled. The last two months of 2009 and first two of 2010 had shown "tentative signs of recovery," he added, "but the road ahead will be bumpy and uncertain, and all indications point towards a slow and drawn out recovery with different regions rebounding at different rates. The fear remains that a macro-economic storm will be inevitable to clear all the excess global production capacity that was created." [04/04/10]