The Dutch maritime cluster
The Dutch maritime cluster: impressive numbers.
In 2014, the direct and indirect production value was almost € 53 billion. The total value added amounted to € 22.6 billion, including 5.2 billion indirect value added. This means the maritime cluster generates 3.4% of the total GDP of The Netherlands. The sector provided employment for around 253.000 people, which is around 2.9% of total employment in The Netherlands. Of these jobs, 163,000 were of direct employment. These numbers are based on a concentration of maritime related companies in the western part of the country and a concentration of maritime related jobs in the wider area of Rotterdam.
New construction of seagoing vessels
Although the order boom witnessed in 2013 initially continued into 2014, the fall in oil prices towards the end of the year caused a slowdown in business from the offshore oil & gas sector. Overall, while new orders worldwide were about 15% lower than in 2013, they still stood at a comparatively high level. Dutch yards had a relatively good year and took orders for 99 new vessels, with a total value of over one billion euro. This ensured that the Netherlands stayed in the top five of European shipbuilding nations. At the end of the year, the Dutch order book stood at 156 vessels with a total tonnage of 698,000 CGT, only marginally down on the previous year’s tally of 720,000 CGT. The downward trend in deliveries that had been apparent since 2007 was finally ended. Dutch yards delivered 67 vessels with a total tonnage of 267,000 CGT, up on the previous year’s total of 235,000 CGT. These deliveries represented a total value of over €1.2 billion, over 80% of which was generated by vessels built for foreign owners. Cargo and offshore vessels each accounted for about a third of deliveries, with the remainder evenly split between dredgers and tugs/workboats. New business from the short sea cargo and project cargo segments increased, as did orders from the offshore wind industry.
Other shipbuilding categories
In addition to yards focused on the production of non-cargocarrying seagoing vessels or short sea cargo vessels, there are numerous yards that produce other specialised vessels. These range from large inland cargo and river cruise vessels to small port tugs and pilot tenders below 100 gross tonnes. Some 108 inland and small seagoing vessels were delivered in 2014. Inland tankers, small cutter suction dredgers, river cruise
vessels and tugs & workboats made up over 90% of these deliveries. The number of inland tankers and cargo vessels declined further, while no fewer than 14 river cruise vessels were delivered, with a healthy order book promising another bumper year for river cruise deliveries in 2015.
Dutch superyacht builders signed another 22 new contracts worth close to €1.5 billion in 2014. While this is a lower number than in 2013 (36), the total value of the ordered yachts is actually slightly higher than in 2013, indicating the increasing size and value of the new orders. Deliveries were down compared to 2013, with 16 superyachts worth €649 million being completed.
The order book at the end of 2014 contained 70 superyachts worth over four billion euro. The value of the order book has thus surpassed the previous record figure of €3.5 billion in 2007. Several yards are expanding their construction facilities to cope with increasing demand. While some export markets for the superyacht builders became slightly more unstable during 2014, other export markets compensated for this thanks to the weaker euro
Source: Dutch Maritime Network.