For the ports of the AdSP of the Sardinian Sea, 2021 can be considered the year of gradual exit from the crisis of the pandemic period. A recovery, compared to 2020, which affected all traffic categories. Starting from passenger traffic which, from the sum of the volumes handled in the main commercial ports (Cagliari, Olbia, Porto Torres and Golfo Aranci), recorded an increase of 38 per cent compared to 2020, rising from approximately 2 million and 965 thousand units from the previous year, reaching 4 million and 83 thousand in 2021. Traffic on routes of less than 20 miles (Santa Teresa and Portovesme) were also in line, with an increase of 39 percent (from 492 thousand to 684 thousand and 500 units). A trend that brings the performances of Sardinian ports closer to the record numbers of 2019. Compared to the pre-covid period, in fact, 2021 marks a – 18 percent on scheduled passenger traffic (2020 closed with – 40 percent) and a – 40 on those for the islands of Carloforte and Corsica (last year, compared to 2019, the volume was reduced by 57 percent). Positive, but still well below the results of 2019 (- 87%), the cruise market, which closed 2021 with a plus 731 percent compared to 2020, going from just 6,900 cruise passengers, to about 57,400. An encouraging figure, however, supported by a schedule of stopovers that, for 2022, will bring the cruise industry closer to the definitive exit from the crisis. Strong recovery also for the goods sector which, globally, closes 2021 with a plus 15 percent compared to the previous year (from just over 38,362 tons in 2020 to about 44,136 tons this year). In detail, liquid bulk (mainly petroleum and refined) closed with an increase of 14 percent. On the other hand, the result of the growth of solid goods (cereals, coal and minerals) amounts to a plus 6 percent. On the other hand, the 2020 – 2021 ratio for wheeled goods is more consistent, with a 20 percent increase, going from about 11.6 million to almost 14 million in the year that just ended. Realignment to the pre-covid period is therefore almost reached, for the goods sector, which stands at minus 5 percent compared to 2019. This highlights how the Sardinian ports have never stopped their activity, guaranteeing the continuity of commercial flows and supplies for the production sectors even during the lockdownperiod. A positive sign, but, at the same time, the battle still needs to be won the handling of containers. If, on one hand, the growth in Teus volumes handled on feeder vessels compared to 2020 is encouraging, the transshipment sector is still waiting for new operators to start its definitive relaunch.
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