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Developments in traffic (I_10)

Developments over the last three years in terms of the total tonnage moved at Huelva Port, the tonnage moved by general groups of goods and the percentage of the total accounted for by each of these groups are as follows:

Traffic 2017 2018 2019
Tonnage moved 32,332,573 32,966,864 33,813,726
Increase 5.81% 1.96% 2.57%
Liquid bulk cargo 24,904,547 25,119,931 26,675,733
Percentage of the total accounted for by solid bulk cargo 77.03% 76.20% 78.88%
Solid bulk cargo 6,487,378 6,662,399 5,755,664
Percentage of the total accounted for by solid bulk cargo 20.06% 20.21% 17.02%
General goods 785,447 984,754 1,145,359
General percentage of the total 2.43% 2.99% 3.39%
Other (fishing, provisions and internal traffic) 155,200 199,781 236,970
Percentage of the total accounted for by other items 0.48% 0.61% 0.70%

Huelva Port finished 2018 with a total volume of port traffic of 33.8 million tonnes, representing an increase of 2.57% on the previous year.

Although solid and liquid bulk cargos are Huelva Port’s traditional specialist areas, it is gradually transforming into a global port catering for all kinds of logistics activities, along with a greater influence by rail connectivity.

This diversification strategy is allowing growth in other port business segment, as is the case of general freight, container traffic, intermodal transport unit (UTI) traffic or Regular Line passengers which posted significant growth in 2019.

Highlights of 2019

As regards the sold bulk traffic, the operations of the private facilities/terminals shrank, which led to a significant drop in the global traffic of the Port of Huelva in this segment (-13.61%).

However, special mention should be made of Algeposa Noatum, regarding cereal within that segment. On 4 October 2019, that stevedoring company opened an extension of its storage facilities with a further 16,000 m2 (8 modules of 1,600 m2, plus 1 independent module of 3.200 m2 allowing storage to be increased by up to 250,000 tons) based on good expectations. This has increased its storage capacity by a total of 51.000 m2 surface area, whose impact on the traffic will certainly be noted to a greater extent during 2020.

On the other hand, there is no doubt of the notable rise in rail container traffic, ‘’TECO’’, with an increase of 56 trains, which meant growth of 17.72% in 2019, within a general downward rail trend at the Port of Huelva, and a frequency of bulk freight exports by rail (trench) that has not managed to consolidate its position.

As far as liquid bulk traffic is concerned, 26.6 million tons were moved, meaning overall growth of 6.19%, where mention should be made of the increase in crude oil (7.54%) and of the refined petroleum products, up 2.12%.

Oils and chemical liquids posted growth of 32.37%.

LNG continued to increase, up 15.32% and reached a total of 3,635,940 tons in 2019.

The forecasts for this gas activity are optimistic for the coming years, not only regarding unloading for regasification (big scale), but also small scale and as LNG bunkering services for vessels. This can be seen in the cases of the AIDA Cruises or Balearia shipping companies to which this type of fuel is supplied for their LNG vessels, and more specifically the AIDAnova cruise ship in Tenerife run by the former, and the ferries that Baleria runs between Huelva and the Canary Islands.

Therefore, special mention should be made of the successful LNG MTTS (multi truck to ship) bunkering test to fuel Balearia vessels, which opens up the way for this system to be used in the very near future and making the Port of Huelva a trail-blazer in this type of supply.

Another milestone in 2019 was that the "Oizmendi" mixed bunker barge belonging to CEPSA, which is currently used for providing the conventional bunkering service at the Port of Huelva (STS) and which can also supply LNG, completed all the risks assessments to supply both services with total safety at the Port of Huelva. It is expected to be operating at full capacity in 2020, which leads to great expectations for this type of service and which will be ground-breaking in Spain and Southern Europe.

In any event, conventional bunkering (supplying liquid fuels) also posted growth of 13.77% in 2019, which consolidated the position of the Port of Huelva as a benchmark for bunkering operations.

Finally, the aforementioned diversification strategy is paying off. In 2019, container traffic accounted for a total of 73,982 TEU, which meant growth of 7.19%, and UTI RO-RO traffic posted significant expansion thanks to the consolidation of the Balearia services during the year. Along with the FRS services, this meant that both companies moved a total of 21,149 units. This was an increase of 148.55%. Along with freight, the regular line passenger figures also improved, up 15.30%. The number of vessels operating at the port also rose, with 81 more vessels than in 2018.

The hinterland or terrestrial area of influence by and from which the freight coming into and leaving from the Port of Huelva is distributed is mainly in the province of Huelva, followed by the provinces of Badajoz, Madrid and Barcelona.

As regards the export hinterland, particularly noteworthy is that it increased on 2018, consolidating the volume of freight moved with the traditional provinces and freight flows happening with new province.


Hinterland and foreland. Main origins and destinations of the freight (I_11)

As regards the export hinterland, particularly noteworthy is that it increased on 2018, consolidating the volume of freight moved with the traditional provinces and the freight flows with new provinces.

Hinterland and foreland. Main origins and destinations of goods

The hinterland or area of influence on dry land through and from which goods arriving at and leaving Huelva port are distributed mostly consists of the province of Huelva itself, followed by the provinces of Badajoz and Barcelona.

The export hinterland, meanwhile, expanded with respect to 2018, not only in terms of volumes of goods moved around traditional provinces, but also with a surge in movements in new provinces.

Export hinterland, 2019

Export hinterland, 2019

Import hinterland, 2019

Import hinterland, 2019

With respect to the foreland, or areas from which imported goods arrive and to which exports from Huelva Port, this is extremely large due to the various countries of origin of the goods required for industry. The table below shows the import and export forelands, with the main origins and destinations of goods.

Import foreland, 2019
Country Mt
Nigeria 5,785,187
USA 2,059,298
Turkey 1,982,524
Spain 1,429,124
Libya 926,587
Irak 678,299 
Brazil 677,990
Indonesia 668,798
Rusia 665,233
Malasia 557,844
Argentina 481,695
United Kingdom 476,630
Egipto 387,166
Chile 368,390
Ucrania 347,472
Country Mt
Export foreland, 2019
Spain 4,857,700
China 1,111,365
USA 806,339
Morocco 710,833
Belgium 708,394
Italy 565,979
Gibraltar 565,105
Portugal 472,181
Netherlands 465,957
France 288,110
United Kingdom 243,924
Nigeria 208,116
Algeria 175,800
Japan 163,035
Perú 116,107

Import foreland, 2019

Import foreland, 2019

Export foreland, 2019

Export foreland, 2019


Revenue billed to the five largest customers (I_12)

Out of a total of 46,726,840.17  euros billed in 2019, the amounts billed to the five largest customers totalled 23,111,735  euros, or 49.46% of the total.

  Amount billed % billed/total
Total billed 46,726,840  
Five largest customers 23,111,735 49.46%

The five largest customers are:

COMPANIES Amount billed % of total
Cía. Española de Petroleos S.A. CEPSA 9,611,954 20.57%
Enagas Transporte S.A.U. 4,229,226 9.05%
Ership S.A.U. 3,930,372 8.41%
Bergé Marítima S.L. 2,782,465 5.95%
Atlantic Copper S.L.U. 2,557,718 5.47%


Main economic development sectors relying on the port for development (I_13)

The main sectors in which the Port Community companies operate are as follows:

  • Industrial Sector:
    • Energy: CEPSA refinery, the ENAGÁS regassing plant and the ENCE biomass plant.
    • Metallurgy: with the ATLANTIC COPPER copper foundry.
    • Chemicals: with plants such as CEPSA Química, Fertiberia, Venator, Fertinagro, Electro Química Onubense, etc.
    • Mining: Ore and copper and nickel concentrate are dispatched from Ingeniero Juan Gonzalo Dock, mostly to China.
  • Logistics Sector:
    • Hydrocarbons: DECAL ESPAÑA, CLH, REPSOL.
    • Minerals: IMPALA TERMINALS.
    • Regular shipping lines to the north of Europe and the Canary Islands: Containerships, FRS, Alisios Shipping, and Balearia&FredOlsen.
  • Fishing sector: fish exchange with first-sale auction and wholesale market.
  • Tourist cruise sector: a port of call several times a year.

The above are in addition to internal sectors relating to port and trading services and activities such as container terminals, shipping companies, loading and unloading operations, customs agencies, consignees, forwarding agents, bunkering services, provisions, supplies, ship repairs, storage facilities etc.

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