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March 16th, 2017
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In an article included in a special volume of the scholarly journal Research in Transportation Business and Management (RTBM), revisiting port governance and port reform around the globe,  PortEconomics member Jasmine Lam, joined by Zengqi Xiao, recap port governance and policy developments in Singapore, emphasising the evolution of the port-city relationship. Port cities serve as a link between the local economy and the global economy, is an interaction of both urban and port systems, giving rise to its complex and dynamic...
March 10th, 2017
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The lack of a sound conceptualization of logistics centres originates from the variety in temporal and spatial approaches. In transportation chains, path-breaking trends in market needs, technological innovations and institutional changes, as well as the place specificity of logistics centres embedded in various national contexts inevitably led to a substantial theoretical ambiguity. PortEconomics members Theo Notteboom, Francesco Parola, Giovanni Satta, along with Marcello Risitano (University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy) aim to...
March 3rd, 2017
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By Theo Notteboom Shanghai was a latecomer in the container business: its first container terminal was opened in 1983 The Portgraphic shows Shanghai’s year-on-year growth in container throughput compared to the top three container ports in Europe (i.e. Rotterdam, Antwerp and Hamburg) and the top three container ports in North America (i.e. Los Angeles, Long Beach and New York/New Jersey).The period of observation starts in 1986. The top three European ports started to receive containers shortly after the launch of the first...
February 28th, 2017
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By Thanos Pallis Cruise activities in the Mediterranean and its adjoining seas experienced remarkable growth in 2016. Annual statistics from the MedCruise association reveal that member ports handled a total of 27.4 million cruise passenger movements and 13,500 cruise calls last year, a significant rise from 2001, when they welcomed 8.6 million passengers and 10,100 cruise visits. MedCruise ports have upgraded their cruise terminal infrastructure to meet this demand for more berthing capacity and to accommodate bigger ships. Providing...
February 27th, 2017
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By Jean-Paul Rodrigue Although several aspects of e-commerce are perceived as a retail activity, it can better be understood from a freight distribution perspective. Because of the characteristics of its operations, e-commerce is having four fundamental impacts on freight distribution: • Distribution Pattern. The growth in home deliveries is one of the most tangible impacts of e-commerce as consumers are switching a growing share of their consumption (particularly discretionary) to purchases made online. Instead of a retail...
February 20th, 2017
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The decision about which port or terminal to use is more often driven by issues like route risk and diversification, labor strife and competing offerings by shipping lines. Shipping line network configuration, own terminal investments, existing alliance partner investments, and availability of the cranes to service ever-larger ships are also critical factors. In an article that was first published on 7 Feb 2917, @ the Reconnecting Asia website, Mary R. Brooks debates whether or not automation at ports is a disruptive enough technology to...
February 14th, 2017
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By Theo Notteboom Belgian and Dutch container ports are part of the Rhine-Scheldt Delta, the largest container port region in Europe in volume terms. Dutch and Belgian ports together handled 23.9 million TEU in 2016 or 1.55% more than in 2015. Rotterdam continues to dominate the Dutch container port system handling 12.38 million TEU in 2016, a small increase of 1.2% compared to 2015. Rotterdam represents 99.5% of all container volumes handled in Dutch ports. Its lowest share ever was recorded in 2006 (i.e. 96%) when the port of Amsterdam...
February 9th, 2017
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By Peter de Langen In fully private markets, the ‘invisible hand’ ensures the survival of the fittest. Under these markets, private organisations can generally be said to be efficient, whether they are globally operating multinationals such as aircraft manufacturers or internet search engines or small to medium enterprises such as restaurants. If they survive we can assume that they are efficient, such is the nature of a private market. The same cannot be said of government-owned organisations, as these are not subject to the same...
February 4th, 2017
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The PortEconomics team had the privilege to provide a customised edition of its flagship PortExecutive Seminar, this time in Panama, with the program attended by the personnel of the Panama Canal Authority The 6th edition of the PortExecutive Seminar focused on business development for ports, and related industrial and logistics complexes. Specific attention was given on issues as drivers of change, the use of concessions, stakeholder management and business development capabilities. The  program included various interactive...
January 9th, 2017
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By Thomas Vitsounis We are living in difficult times and if another shipping line goes bankrupt in a few months’ time, people can’t escape from that. Also, with consolidation happening more and more, these dangers and risk profiles will be increased for terminal operators. However, once a port realises a crisis could be coming up, it’s a case of being well prepared to micro-manage the effects of the crisis and make the right decisions. Here, technology is coming into play. With more information in hand and more sophisticated...
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