PortEconomics celebrates the publication of PortReport No 2 – the second of the PortEconomics Discussion Reports series – with a study by PortEconomics member Ricardo Sanchez discussing the evolution of the Caribbean container port market over the last two decades.
The Caribbean, also known as the Mar de las Antillas, is an area of 2.7 million km². It is easy to see the importance of its size by comparing it with other similar seas such as the Mediterranean (2.5 million km²), the North Sea (650 thousand km²), or the Baltic (420 thousand km²). From the economic, and the port and logistics points of view, the Caribbean is a key for the global maritime movements, constituting a relevant area for globalization and international trade. As trade grows, flows are accommodated according to the advantages of different transport routes and hubs. In this context, the Caribbean basin has assumed a key role for the region and for the world.[i] In fact, the position of the Caribbean within the global container shipping network is influenced by two contrasting situations. One is the “intermediate” location in the main global routes and the other is the situation of “isolated” small islands, without significant hinterlands[ii]. But the Caribbean also has larger islands that combine bigger hinterlands with the possibility of offering transhipment services on the biggest trade routes.
All these imply that the Caribbean basin is extremely heterogeneous port area – thus the analysis of the evolution of container ports and the related port investment trends over the last decades would allow a better understanding of the region.
The PortEconomics Discussion Report No 2, entitled the “Caribbean container port catchment areas: 1998-2016 evolution and the risk of over-investment” can be freely downloaded here.
[i] Sanchez, R. J. (2014b): Protagonista del mundo. Revista Pórtico 19. Cartagena, Colombia.
[ii] Sanchez & Wilmsmeier (2009): Maritime sector and ports in the Caribbean: the case of CARICOM countries. UN ECLAC NRID Series 140. Santiago
The PortEconomics Discussion Reports series (PortReports), aim to enrich business and academic insights related to the port sector and to support policy-making by port professionals. Studies published as part of the series:
- Monios, J. T. Notteboom, G. Wilmsmeier, J-P. Rodrigue (2016). Competition and Complementarity Between Seaports and Hinterlands for Locating Distribution Activities, PortEconomics Discussion Report No 1, April 2016.
- Sanchez, R. J. (2017). Caribbean container port catchment areas: 1998-2016 evolution and the risk of over-investment, PortEconomics Discussion Report No 2, August 2017.