Thailand ports counting “pandemic” damages

Port Authority of Thailand issued press-release with ports operations statistics during Oct 2019 – Mar 2020 period, which embraces ships calls and containers handling in ports of Bangkok (TOT), Laem Chabang (LCP), Ranong Port (Andaman sea), Chiang Saen and Chiang Khong Ports (Mekong river).
Bangkok Port recorded 1977 ship calls, increase 6.18% in comparison with the same period previous year, with total cargo turnover 11.024 million tons, increase 5.75%, and handled 0.725 mil TEU, increase 1.16%.
Laem Chabang Port recorded 5200 ship calls, decrease 5.21%, with total cargo turnover 43.55 mil tons, decrease 4.96%. LCP handled 3.973 mil TEU, reduction 3.21%.
Ranong Port, Andaman sea, recorded 164 ship calls, decrease 11.58%, with total cargo turnover 70, 700 tons, decrease 14.7%. Port handled 2182 TEU, decrease 4.5%.
Chiang Saen and Chiang Khong Ports, Mekong river, recorded 1775 and 145 ship calls, 6.8% increase and 3% decrease respectively, with total turnover 120,880 and 1,860 tons, respectively.
Virus negative consequences started to affect Thai ports in Feb-Mar, but worst is to come. Thai economy is forecasted to contract by 5.3% in 2020, with tourism and products exports to suffer most. Household incomes, on average, are in deep decline, negatively affecting consumer goods import volumes and retail trade. Cars production and export plunged, because of lockdowns and decreased demand.
Total volume of ocean freight is expected to decrease by 5+ percent, providing economy will restart and recover in second half of the year. Containers volume is forecasted to decrease by 9-10%, while shipping companies profits will plunge by some 20-30%.
Total containers volume during Oct 2019 – Mar 2020 was 4.698 mil TEU, decrease 2.56%.
As of middle May, “pandemic” situation in Thailand is steadily improving, with 0-4 “infection” cases daily during last 10 days. Restrictions and lockdowns lift started early May, it comes in stages, but there’s no final decision yet on inbound flights ban after May 31, as well as on other bans and restrictions. Nobody knows yet the extent of damages world economy sustained during so-called “pandemic”.

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