The Brazilian Porto Itapoá has recorded a strong recovery from the Covid-19 crisis while during the first half of the year it marked a rise of 41.3% in imports over the same period of 2020 with 70,000 containers unloaded at the port.
Exports had a growth of 8.5% in comparison to the previous year's first-half figures with almost 50,000 boxes exiting the port.
In addition, there was a growth of 9.7% in coastal shipping cargo, with over 15,000 containers in the first six months of 2021.
During the same period, total container traffic in Porto Itapoá increased by 11.3% year on year, with 238,000 containers handled.
To accommodate such ships smoothly, the port has made an investment into dredging the Babitonga port complex to increase the depth of the bay’s access channel by 2022.
"This work will increase the draft of vessels from 14 meters to 16 meters, which will mean that it can service large vessels of up to 400 meters," explained a port representative.
Additionally, due to the increasing container demand, Porto Itapoá is already planning the next stage of expansion which amounts to US$270 million and should be completed within five years.
By then, the annual handling capacity of 1.2 million TEU is expected to be increased to over 2 million TEU per year.
Around 50% of the cargo handled at Porto Itapoá comes from companies from other states, in particular for importing electronics and other items. The rest of the container traffic which comes from companies in Santa Catarina includes cars and car parts, electric motors, metalwork, white goods and refrigerated exports.