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Yangtze October container throughput falls 8.6%

7 November 2013
Statistics from the Yangtze River Administration under the Ministry of Transport show that container throughput via the major ports along the Yangtze trunkline declined by 8.6 per cent year-on-year to 1.04m TEU in October.

Throughout October, low rainfall and the water storing cycle at various dams along the upper Yangtze including the Three Gorges and Gezhouba dams have drastically reduced water volumes across the entire river by two to four metres compared with the same month last year, the official report said. However, it did not specifically link these factors to the decrease in container throughput.

On the upper reaches of the Yangtze, as many as 11 hydropower projects are under way or completed. The Xiluodu hydropower project, built at a location with a drop of 3,300 metres, is the second largest hydropower generator in China after the Three Gorges and the largest of four on the Jinshajiang River, another name for the upper reaches of the Yangtze. It started its first storing cycle to a water level of 540 metres on 4 May. About 160km downstream is the Xiangjiaba project, the third largest hydropower project in China. It started its first ever storing cycle to a water level of 370 metres on 21 June. This has led to a reduction in water volumes in the 380km stretch between Yibing and Chongqing, experts say.

Throughput of general cargo rose nearly three per cent in October to 158m tons. Between January and October, container throughput increased by 12.5 per cent to 11.26m TEU, while that of general cargo was up by 7.5 per cent to 1.537bn tons.

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