PORT OF PARANAGUÁ, BRAZIL —  The Ports of Paranaguá and Antonina announced on Jan. 16 that they closed 2014 with a total throughput of 45.5 million tonnes, which represents a decline of 1.3% from 2013, when the ports moved 46.1 million tonnes. Throughout the year, the ports exported 27.9 million tonnes and imported other 17.1 million tonnes.

Soybeans represented the largest exported item with a total of 7.5 million tonnes. Bran (5,179,000 tonnes), sugar (4,399,000 tonnes) and maize (4,204,000 tonnes) complete the list of major products exported. In contrast with 9,698,000 tonnes imported, fertilizers accounted for more than half of the cargo imported by the Parana ports.

According to Luiz Henrique Dividino, chief executive officer of Administration of Paranaguá and Antonina Ports (APPA), the result fell short of expectations because of various events in the global economy. "In the agricultural bulk, for example, the perceived slight decrease was due to lower commodity prices in the Chicago Stock Exchange, which discouraged the sale to overseas market. In the vehicle segment, the fall was due to the troubled relationship of foreign trade with Argentina and the fall in the sale of domestic vehicles. This situation is also deployed in reducing portion of container traffic that bring automotive parts and components."

Under Secretary of Paraná Infrastructure and Logistics José Richa Son noted that the performance of the Brazilian economy hampered the movement of value- added products. "On the other hand, the year 2014 was marked by great achievements in Paraná Ports. With State Government investments, numerous actions taken will provide the importers and exporters operational conditions. In the Export Corridor, for example, we acquired four new ship loaders with capacity 33% higher than the current already started export of the season 2014-15. We also inaugurated a new container pier with 315 meters with four new container cranes.” With the extension of the pier, the Port of Paranaguá qualified to handle the largest container vessels.