Russian port operators handled 221 million tons of cargo in the third quarter of 2023, which is 5.5% more than in the same period of 2022. Russian seaports in the Azov-Black Sea basin are increasing cargo handling at the fastest pace compared to ports in other basins.

This is evidenced by statistics published by the PortNews publication and the Russian Institute for Natural Monopolies, the CFTS portal reports.

According to the statistics, Russian port operators on the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea handled 74.5 million tons of cargo in the third quarter of 2023, which is 12.7% more than in the same period of 2022. In the first nine months of 2023, the corresponding figure was 225.7 million tons, or 18.2% more than in the same period of 2022.

Ports in the Arctic, Baltic, and Far East basins lagged far behind both in terms of volumes handled and growth dynamics in January-September 2023 compared with the previous year.

It is also worth noting that the volume of cargo handled in Russia's seaports on the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea increased for the second consecutive quarter. They handled 38.9% more cargo in April-June this year, compared with the same period last year.

There was a 22% increase in the volume of cargo handled here in January-April.

Returning to July-September 2023, it should be noted that, according to the statistics, the Russian ports on the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea increased the transshipment of crude oil by 9.6%, liquefied natural gas by 1.9%, containerized cargo by 58.7%, and other cargo (which obviously includes grain) by 39.4%. Only the volume of coal transshipment reduced (by 20.5% quarter on quarter).

In total, operators in all Russian seaports handled 676.4 million tons of cargo in January-September 2023, 9.2% more than they handled in January-September 2022. In January-September 2023, they handled 204.3 million tons of crude oil (6.1% more than in the same period of the previous year), 96.1 million tons of oil products (6.4% less), 161.6 million tons of coal and coke (7.4% more), 7.5 million tons of ore (26.7% less), 16.4 million tons of ferrous metals (16.4% less), 26.5 million tons of chemicals and fertilizers (59.1% more), 54.5 million tons of grain (91.3% more), and 37.3 million tons of containerized cargo (9.3% more).

As reported earlier, more than 1 million tons of oil 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. There were also 24 voyages involving the delivery of petroleum products to roadsteads for transshipment: 21 in the Laconian Gulf off the coast of Greece and 3 off the coast of Malta. This indicates that the situation regarding compliance with the oil embargo against Russia has deteriorated significantly and that the European Union has no effective mechanisms (or the will) to monitor the violations to which Russia is increasingly resorting.

CFTS also reported that Russia increased wheat exports by 28% in September. Shipments through the port of Novorossiysk increased 1.5 times to 1.75 million tons, and transshipment 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.

As reported earlier, Russia exported 6.05 million tons of vegetable oil in the past fiscal year, which is 33% more than it exported in the previous fiscal year. Exports of sunflower oil also increased by 25% to a record 3.84 million tons.