Box Trade

Apr 21, 2010 (LBO) – Cargo volumes at a Colombo port private container terminal run by an associate firm of John Keells Holdings hit a new monthly high in March, as transshipment trade in the region recovered.

But transshipment cargo yields lower margins than domestic import-export containers, , analysts said.

The conglomerate John Keells Holdings has a 42.2 percent stake in SAGT, which is now one of the main contributors to group profits.

South Asia Gateway Terminals (SAGT) said in a statement it handled 181,991 TEUs (Twenty-foot Equivalent container Units) in March 2010, crossing the 180,000 TEU-mark for the first time.

The March cargo volumes exceeded the 164,243 TEUs handled in February 2010, which itself had been a record high.

It was also 26.9 percent more than the volume handled in the same month last year, when however trade had slumped owing to global recession.

“The 2009/2010 fiscal year throughput at SAGT (of) 1,882,195 TEUs is also the highest ever handled in a fiscal year,” the SAGT statement said.

The volumes were a growth of over 12 percent compared with the previous fiscal year.

SAGT’s march quarter cargo volumes were up 35 percent to 509,124 TEUs from