Covering the environment, engineering, technology, and economics
Sunday, December 4, 2016
The Importance of Ports
From the Arup Connectivity blog (which I highly recommend adding to your reading list):
"Over 80% of the world’s products and services are transported via sea and depend on port infrastructure to transport products and commodities to and from their final destinations. But for an island nation like the UK, with over 500m tonnes of goods, food, materials, fuel and cargo delivered by sea every year, it might come as a surprise to learn that there’s no single institution championing the strategic interests of UK ports. I believe they need advocacy in order to adapt and prosper.
Although shipping companies have relatively high profiles, the public remains largely unaware of ports themselves. In the UK, 80% of imports and exports are transported through the country’s top 15 ports. But organisationally the UK port industry is a patchwork of bodies and interests, a mixture of privately run enterprises or locally-held trusts. Ports also compete among themselves for business so have traditionally failed to speak with one voice.
Other countries demonstrate what’s possible. Denmark now hosts an annual global maritime forum that brings together the biggest names in ports and shipping, relevant policy makers and other influencers to debate the future of this vital aspect of the world economy. The UK should be taking a similar lead."