All three parts of the Port of Switzerland – Kleinhüningen, Birsfelden and Muttenz-Au – are well connected to the European road and rail networks and offer optimal conditions for the establishment of reliable and efficient supply chains.
On the right bank of the Rhine, Kleinhüningen is composed of docks I and II and a turning basin. Kleinhüningen has three container terminals, whose development is still growing. Kleinhüningen also serves as platform for the transshipment and storage of dry bulk goods such as steel, aluminium and other metals, as well as for liquid fuels.
Birsfelder is on the left bank of the Rhine and is specialized in the handling and storage of steel and other metals while being connected to production sites. In addition, this part of the port is also used to transship other dry goods, containers and petroleum products.
Located on the left bank, Muttenz-Au is the area where particular liquid fuels are transshipped and stored. Moreover, this part of the port is used for edible oil, fertilizer, clay, grain and other dry goods. It is specialized in the handling of heavy freight.
The Swiss Rhine ports are a major asset for the country and the region. The Rhine connects Switzerland to the sea.
Waterways are not only an economic asset for companies but also for individuals. In Europe, there are indeed some 500 million tons conveyed through waterways, with a traffic volume of 100 billion tonne-kilometers.
The volume of traffic in Switzerland amounts to almost 5 billion tons-kilometers, which represents more than half of the goods carried by the SBB. The Swiss Rhine ports handle between six and seven million tons of goods yearly. This represents about 10 to 15 percent of total Swiss imports over one year.
Switzerland’s free access to the sea is guaranteed by the 1868 Mannheim Act (revised in 1963). It grants Switzerland a total right of access across the Rhine region and partly beyond. The Rhine is considered as international waters up to the Mittlerer Brücke bridge in Basel.
In terms of port management, the Swiss Rhine ports are responsible for the following tasks regarding trade and planning:
- The planning of port infrastructure, implementation of development programs in the short, medium and long term for ports on the Rhine, taking into account the macro and micro-economic factors (project planning, investment and maintenance)
- Determining the type and level of port fees, and their perception, taking into account the related economic and competitive conditions
- Management of the building and leasing rights, and rental contracts, with the adjustment of conditions and perception
- Marketing and communication, i.e. the determination of all the services provided and their commercialisation
- Finance and control
- Management of river and port statistics