Port Profile: Port of Rotterdam

Rotterdam portThe Port of Rotterdam, founded on a dam in the Rotte River circa 1250 CE, became a major seaport in 1360 when a canal to the Schie was built. In 1872, a channel to the North Sea was excavated, increasing harbor traffic enormously. Sustaining severe damage during World War 11, the port and surrounding city were subsequently rebuilt and modernized in the following decades. The first containerized vessel called the port in 1966. Since then, the Port of Rotterdam has continued to grow, becoming an important transshipment center and the largest port in Europe.


  • Container terminals: 9
  • Ro-Ro terminals: 7
  • Liquid bulk cargo terminals: 35
  • Multi-purpose terminals: 17
  • Dry Bulk terminals: 15
  • Other terminals: 9


  • Volume 2011: 31.03 million TEUs
  • Volume 2012: 31.53 million TEUs


The port stretches 25 miles along the Nieuwe Waterweg canal, covering 10,500 hectares from the city to the Maasvlakte, a harbour and industrial area near the city of Rotterdam in the Netherlands