KUEHNE+NAGEL has reported a return to volume growth in its Sea Logistics business unit in the third quarter of 2023.

EBIT in Sea Logistics amounted to CHF 875 million (about $1.5 billion) in the first nine months of this year.

Container volumes stood at 3.2 million TEU through the end of September 2023. Kuehne+Nagel said the Sea Logistics division recorded slight volume growth in the third quarter of 2023, which intensified in September.

Market share gains were mainly on the AsiaEurope and trans-Pacific routes.

Kuehne+Nagel said the group overall achieved “good results” in the months January to September 2023 in a market environment that remained challenging.

It said the economic situation experienced in 2021 and 2022 continued to distort the year-on-year comparison of all key figures.

EBIT for the first nine months of 2023 almost doubled compared to pre-pandemic levels, according to the group.

Its EBIT in first nine months of 2023 was CHF 1.6 billion (about $2.8 billion) with earnings of CHF 1.2 billion ($2.1 billion).

“The Kuehne+Nagel Group performed well in the third quarter of 2023, even though the hoped-for economic recovery failed to materialise,” Kuehne+Nagel International CEO Stefan Paul said.

“We gained market share and secured our yields. We achieved important successes in the implementation of the strategic roadmap 2026, particularly in the area of renewable energy and in the growth markets of Asia.

“In the final quarter of 2023, we will continue to focus on cost control, which is firmly embedded in our corporate culture.”

EBIT in the Air Logistics business unit was CHF 429 million ($753 million) in the first nine months of 2023. Kuehne+Nagel handled around 1.5 million tonnes of airfreight were handled between January and September 2023.

The Road Logistics division posted an EBIT of CHF 119 million ($209 million) in the first nine months of 2023. The group said the economic slowdown in core markets, especially in Europe, affected shipment volumes in the third quarter of the year.

And the Contract Logistics business unit reported an EBIT of CHF 158 million ($277 million) and a further increase in earnings in the first nine months of 2023.