Despite the sanctions and restrictions imposed by Western countries, Russian seaports have continued to increase cargo transshipment volumes in 2023. Russian port operators handled 749.3 million tons of cargo in January-October this year, which is 7.8% more than they handled in the same period of 2022.

This data was provided by the Association of Russian Commercial Seaports, the CFTS portal reports.

In the period under review, the ports handled 177.6 million tons of coal (down 3.8% year-on-year), 61.7 million tons of grain (up 1.8 times), 30.1 million tons of fertilizers (up 1.6 times), 18.2 million tons of ferrous metals (down 14.8%), 8.3 million tons of ore (down 25.2%), 228.3 million tons of crude oil (up 7%), and 103.2 million tons of petroleum products (down 9.6%).

The volume of export cargo handled by them increased by 5.9%; the volume of import cargo handled by them also increased by 8.5%.

In terms of regional breakdown, Russian ports in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea basin had the best cargo-turnover dynamics amid the restrictions that Russia imposed on the operations of Ukrainian ports. In January-October, the Russian ports on the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea handled 251.3 million tons of cargo, which is 17.2% more than they handled in the first 10 months of last year. Transshipment of dry cargo reached 122.9 million tons (up 26.2% year-on-year) and transshipment of liquid bulk cargo 128.4 million tons (up 9.8%). In January-October this year, the port of Novorossiysk handled 136.7 million tons of cargo (up 13.7%), the port of Taman 35.6 million tons (up 1.7%), the port of Tuapse 21.6 million tons (up 22.8%), the port of Kavkaz 19.1 million tons (up 42.7%), and the port of Rostov-on-Don 14.3 million tons (up 16.8%).

Thus, the dynamics of cargo handling in Russian ports slowed down slightly during the month, as the increase in the volume of cargo handled was 18.2% in the first nine months of this year.

As reported earlier, over 1 million tons of petroleum products were exported from the Black Sea ports of Russia alone in September, in violation of the European Union’s embargo. There were even six direct shipments of oil products from Russian ports to ports in the European Union and the United States.

As previously reported by CFTS, Russia increased wheat exports by 28% in September. Shipments through the port of Novorossiysk increased 1.5 times to 1.75 million tons, and transshipments in roadsteads increased 35% to 158,000 tons. Transshipment through the Sea of Azov increased by 20% to 609,000 tons, through the port of Taman by almost 1.8 times to 416,000 tons, and through the port of Tuapse by 2.5 times to 157,000 tons.

In addition, seaports in the Russian-occupied Crimea handled 2.2 million tons of cargo from the beginning of 2023 to 23 October. This is seven times more than the volume they handled in the same period of 2022.

"The increase in this indicator is mainly because of an increase in grain transshipment," the Crimean occupation administration said.

It should be noted that only one factor can explain such a significant increase in the export of grain cargo through the ports of Crimea: the export of grain from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine by the Russians.