"Activity of Latvian ports within the period since 2010 has become more stable, sustainable and diversified"

"Among the Baltic States, Latvia continues to maintain its leading position in the field of transit: since 2010 about three times more cargo has been transhipped in Latvian ports than in Estonian and by 1/3 more than in Lithuania," said Aivars Jurcans (Aivars Jurcāns), finance and investment expert. According to his calculations, when comparing the performance of the Baltic ports in 2017, it can be observed that almost half of the total cargo volume in the Baltic States was handled by Latvian ports, i.e. almost the same volume as transhipped within the ports of Klaipeda and Tallinn.

"It is not correct to analyse long-term processes through a short-term prism, although capital and investment-intensive businesses face it all over the world," said Jurcans. In his opinion, in order to qualitatively evaluate the work of the transit sector, which is significantly influenced by various geopolitical developments and investment projects estimated in tens of millions, the situation must be analysed in the much broader context of both time and region.

"Overall, the activity in Latvian ports within the period since 2010 has become more stable, sustainable and diversified" says the expert. The market leader in Latvia during this period was the Port of Riga - it has served more than half of the total volume of major Latvian ports, and the volume of cargo in the Port of Riga has increased on average by 2.6% each year.

"In the last ten years, the volumes of containerized cargo handled at Latvian ports have almost doubled. It should be noted that 99% of those were transhipped in Riga", notes the expert, emphasizing that in general, container cargo turnover at the Port of Riga during the last decade has grown by an average of 10% per year. Similarly, within the cargo portfolio of the Port of Riga, the volume of grain and grain products has grown considerably during the ten-year period. In addition, about 75% of the grain is of local origin, therefore, of Latvian export cargo. "It can be said that grain has become a new and significant cargo for the Port of Riga," Jurcans states.

Looking at the past decade and in the context of complex geopolitical events, the finance and investment expert concludes the following: "There is a saying that it is necessary to play with the cards which are dealt, and figures show that the Latvian transit industry is a very respectable player."