Turbo and Banana Drive Foreign Trade



Turbo and Banana Drive Foreign Trade
Maersk Group
Trade Report
Q1 2016
Turbo and Banana Drive
Foreign Trade
The use of refrigerated containers boosts banana exports from Antioquia, while demand
increases in the Americas and Europe.
Trade figures for the first quarter of 2016 showcase an encouraging outlook for Colombian exporters and importers. Foreign trade
in containers increased 4%, compared to the same period last year.
This growth is composed of a 9% increase in containerized exports
volume and a rise of 0.1% in imported units.
factors: (i) Continued growth in raw import materials in refrigerated
containers; (ii) The removal of entry restrictions on Colombian products by the United States and Ecuador; (iii) ProColombia´s efforts
to diversify exports away from hydrocarbons by opening markets
for Colombian companies that sell other products.
We expect gradual growth in containerized foreign trade to continue throughout the first semester of 2016 based on the following
Maersk Group Trade Report / Q1 2016 / COLOMBIA
Refrigerated Containers Drive Fruit Exports
According to Maersk Line data, fruit was
the main product exported in containers from Colombia during the first three
months of 2016. Fruit sales, excluding
banana, grew 29%, partly due to the
replacement of traditional sugar cane
plantations by a variety of fruit crops,
such as pineapples and strawberries.
Upon including banana exports in the
statistics, exports growth soared by 87%,
relative to the same period last year.
This increase is explained by a modal shift
in exports at the port of Turbo, Antioquia;
namely, bananas that were traditionally
exported in banana vessels began to be
shipped in refrigerated containers.
The reason behind the shift is that temperature-controlled containers offer more
attractive conditions for Colombian producers, as they allow them to ensure the quality of their product,
reach new markets, and strengthen their presence in key places as
Europe, where Colombian export growth was about 80% during the
first quarter of 2016.
“Container ships are more efficient due to economies of scale
and the reductions they offer in terms of transportation costs
make Colombian goods more competitive”, explains Juan Camilo
Vásquez, Colombia Sales Manager for Maersk Line.
In parallel, the growth in fruit exports has been reinforced by promotional initiatives led by ProColombia, the state trade promotion
agency. A clear example lies in the sale of gooseberries, where a
new agreement with the United States reached last year to lift
“Container ships are
more efficient due to
economies of scale and
the reductions they offer
in terms of transportation
costs make Colombian
goods more
restrictions on that fruit
Juan Camilo Vásquez
has reduced export costs by
roughly 40%, allowing this new
export to become more competitive
in the American market.
For its part, Hass avocados remain one of the most sought-after
products in the European market. During the first quarter of this
year, avocado exports in containers grew 148% in comparison to
the same quarter in 2015. Access to new markets, such as Spain
and Belgium, are largely responsible for this great rise.
Colombian Traders are Ready
to Tackle Market Challenges
Analyzing the performance of Colombian foreign trade during the first quarter, we now see that Colombian exporters
are more prepared to handle the peso’s volatility by assuming that the local currency will remain at an average price of
around $3.000 pesos per dollar.
“Upon seeing that the local currency would remain at levels
similar to those seen last year, Colombian importers decided
to adjust their strategy. In order to continue with their operations, importers are now buying at a higher cost and transferring the difference to consumers”, explains Yenia Abadía,
Colombian Country Director for SeaLand.
Maersk Group Trade Report / Q1 2016 / COLOMBIA
Sugar Boosts Intra-Americas Market
From January to March 2016, the total volume of containerized trade to the Americas
grew 3%, as compared with the same period
the previous year. This is primarily brought
about by the offset between a 10.9%
increase on imports and a 5% fall in exports.
Diving into the data by sectors, the case of
sugar is particularly noteworthy, where a rise
of 26% in imports from Ecuador, Peru and
Brazil took place during the first quarter. This
high growth can be largely attributed to: (i)
Production adjustments put into practice
by Colombian sugar mills in order to satisfy
internal demand, which was affected by “El
Niño’s” negative effect on local agricultural
production; (ii) A constant increase in the
production of bioethanol from the sugarcane crops, which now places Colombia as
the third largest biofuel producer in Latin
America, after Brazil and Argentina.
With the Pacific Alliance´s Trade Protocol
now in effect, we expect imports to continue
to drive the Intra-Americas trade throughout the first semester of 2016. Under the
agreement’s terms, partner countries will be
exempt from import duties, which will enable
their products to be more competitive.
Ports of Turbo and Cartagena Set the Pace during the First Quarter
The volume of containerized imports and exports in leading
national seaports grew 9% during the first quarter year, compared
to the same period of 2015.
The shift in modality in banana shipments in
Turbo, Antioquia’s port is largely behind this
shit. Conversely, import volumes in the Ports
of Barranquilla and Buenaventura dropped
by 8% and 9%, respectively, mainly due
to a decrease in demand for Asian retail
strengthened trade with the United States. Exports to the US
grew 8% during the first quarter of the year, driven by petroleum
product sales. On the other hand, paper pulp, plastic and
chemicals are among the most demanded products by
the Colombian industry, which needs to increase its
production capacity.
Cartagena’s port
increased its operations
by 2%, largely as a
result of strengthened
trade with the United
Reference Sources:
• National Directorate of Taxes and Customs (DIAN)
• Colombian Association of Sugarcane Growers
In contrast, Cartagena’s port increased
its operations by 2%, largely as a result of
Maersk Group Trade Report / Q1 2016 / COLOMBIA
Acerca del Grupo Maersk
Acerca de Maersk Line
■ Maersk Group employs about 6,800 people in Latin
Maersk Line is the world’s largest container shipping company. It
has operated in Colombia for over 20 years and is today the industry
leader, transporting 1 out of every 5 containers that moves through the
country. With operations in over 120 countries and a fleet of over 600
ships that sail the most important trading routes in the globe, Maersk
Line is able to observe trends in international trade from a privileged
America and more than 89,000 around the world. ■ The Group has offices in more than 130 countries. ■ Maersk Group is a global conglomerate operating
in transportation, shipping, and energy. The Group
places great emphasis on the training and wellbeing of its collaborators, as well as long- term
sustainability. For more information or to request an interview,
please contact: Acerca de SeaLand
SeaLand is a regional, ocean transportation company dedicated to the
Intra-Americas market and is a division of the Maersk Group. SeaLand
commenced operations on January 1, 2015 with local, knowledgeable
sales and support staff positioned in Colombia and throughout the
Americas to serve the unique requirements of shippers in this market.
With a strong tradition of customer-centric service in this trade region,
the company’s infrastructure provides greater service flexibility and
enables the company to act quickly to respond to market dynamics.
Over 240 dedicated personnel make up the SeaLand organization.
Camilo De Guzmán Tel: +57 (300) 522 1076 / c
[email protected]
María Olga Corredor
Tel: +57 (312) 554 1577 /
[email protected]
Daniela Caballero Tel: +57 (300) 571 4854 /
[email protected]