Mar 19, 2012

Top 10 Fastest Growing Seaports

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In Bruges
Click here to read this article in the magazine edition!

Click here to read this article in the magazine edition!

10.) Port of Townsville

Thanks to an aggressive harbor (or ‘harbour,’ if you’re an Aussie) expansion project, the Port of Townsville is rapidly becoming one of Australia’s most critical ports. By adding berths and deepening the existing area, Townsville could eventually rival Australia’s other large eastern seaboard port cities, including Brisbane.

9.) Port of Kolkata

It might be one of the oldest ports structurally on this list, but India’s movement into the global marketplace has revived this former superpower. Originally built as the premier port of British India, India’s resurgence since independence has helped the Port of Kolkata resume international notoriety.

8.) Port of Durban

Africa is likely to become an increasingly attractive business location in this century, which makes the Port of Durban vitally important to trade on the African continent. Durban had the largest container terminal in the Southern Hemisphere, according to the AAPA World Port Rankings of 2009. The following year, Durban handled over 2.5 million TEU.

7.) Port Metro Vancouver

Easily one of the largest ports on this list, Port Metro Vancouver (formerly the Port of Vancouver) is the fourth-largest in North America in terms of volume handled, and is unrivaled in Canada. With 28 deep-sea and domestic marine terminals, it’s pretty clear that Vancouver will continue to be a major player as long as trade with Asia keeps up.

6.) Port of San Antonio

Possibly the most remote port on this list, the Port of San Antonio in Chile is the busiest port on the western coast of South America. Despite the devastating 1985 earthquake that destroyed much of the harbor’s infrastructure, the Port of San Antonio has since recovered, and was named the eighth major port in Latin America in 2006.

5.) Port of Yanbu

Located on the western seaboard of Saudi Arabia, the Port of Yanbu is responsible for shipping out a large portion of the nation’s petroleum. With all of the controversy surrounding the possible closure of the Strait of Hormuz, Yanbu’s importance could skyrocket, given its position on the opposite side of the Arabian peninsula.

4.) Port of Acu

Thanks to a growing regional economy, the ‘Superport’ of Acu is quickly becoming one of Brazil’s most important economic hubs. The port’s growth is seen as a key that will reportedly “change the future of port operations in Brazil.” Acu is specifically designed to meet growing international demand in the nation’s booming iron ore and coal business.

3.) Port of Bruges-Zeebrugge

Jutting out to the English Channel from the coast of Belgium, the Port of Bruges-Zeebrugge annually handles 50 million tons of cargo. One of the most attractive parts of doing business with Bruges-Zeebrugge is the wide range of trades the port handles. Specifically, Bruges-Zeebrugge has become Europe’s leading RoRo (roll-on/roll-off) port, easing transportation strain on cars, trucks and railroad cars.

2.) Port of Tianjin

We could put a half-dozen or so Chinese ports on this list, as the country is full of important international trading centers. However, none might be more important currently than Tianjin, which serves as the major maritime gateway of capital Beijing. Tianjin handled 413 million tons of cargo in 2010, which was the fourth largest output in the world at the time.

1.) Port of Savannah

The ‘Gateway to the South,’ the Port of Savannah handles almost all of the container shipping that comes into Atlanta, where it’s often shipped out via freight forwarding or freight rail. Improvements to both the Suez and Panama Canal might seem distant and far away, but the East Coast Savannah Express will link the Georgia port city with much of the world, including China. “These new services are a direct result of the Georgia Ports Authority's successful efforts to stay ahead of the growth curve and invest in terminal improvements and expansion,” said Doug J. Marchand, executive director of the Georgia Ports Authority, at the time of the announcement of the ESX. “The ability of South Atlantic ports to accommodate future growth both in terminal capacity and with nearby acreage for distribution centers are a very real issue for our customers. Savannah continues to be the nation's fastest-growing container port.”

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