Germany’s top terminal operators Hamburger Hafen und Logistik (HHLA) and Bremen-based rival Eurogate have suspended negotiations on future cooperation, a process that had been going on for more than two years.
HHLA, majority owned by the city of Hamburg, has been in talks with Eurogate since spring 2020 about bundling the container terminals of both companies in Hamburg, Bremerhaven and Wilhelmshaven. However, discussions about a joint operation have been put on hold due to what the companies described as the unforeseeable impact of the current geopolitical situation.
Both the port of Hamburg and the terminals in Bremerhaven have lost market share to the ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp in recent years, and the potential alliance was characterised in Germany as a way to stand up to the competition in the Netherlands and Belgium.
The parties have not shared the results of the negotiations to date but said the talks would be delayed “until the general economic conditions have stabilised enough to ensure a successful continuation”.