Singapores Port Hits Record High

The Port of Singapore is ranked the highest in the world for freight cargos and TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit). It has maintained that record since the year 2000. Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew announced the continued solid growth of the port in 2014 and the expectation of future performance to exceed the current year’s success.

Singapore remains the uppermost world container port and is credited with the highest quality of service and reliability. With the current tonnage surpassing 2.3 billion gross tons it measure out to nearly a 2 percent increase of the 2013 record high. This is the highest is has been since the year 2010. It has maintained an exceptional reputation for many years and is still the most competitive and efficient in the industry.

Tanker, container ships, and bunker sales made up approximately 42 million tonnes. Container TEU increased 4 percent and cargo tonnage increased 3.5 percent in 2014. Under MPA’s register Singapore is ranked 7th in the world’s top registries. It is home to more than 130 international shipping groups and 5000 maritime organisations. This vast array of associates within the industry makes it inviting for clients to continue registering new accounts.

Increasing The Competitive Edge

While the Port of Singapore already holds the record for excellence in rates and dependability, plans to expand this competitive edge moves forward. Mr. Lui celebrated the maritime industries major contributions to the economy and stated the government is committed to support their growth.

With this in mind the investments were directed to improve port infrastructures and enhance the current connectivity which is already near the best in the world. This will no doubt improve the high standards of service already experienced and sustain progression.

Pasir Panjang Terminal is one stunning example of government support. It is now handles containers of 13,000 TEUs or more and has a remote controlled crane system that is unsurpassed. It also has a dedicated car terminal and is quite competitive in vehicle transports. The reclamation at Tuas is another example. The dredging is being done with grab barges and simultaneous building of the seawall. Shore protection is a major element of this reclamation and the company has over 25 years’ experience to ensure the success of this project. This type of innovation and forward thinking will ensure the strength of Singapore’s shipping industry in the years ahead.

International Shipping Industry 2015

Over 90% of the world trade is carried by the international shipping industry. This is the reason why shipping is among the most important industries for the economy of any country. Without a robust shipping industry it would be almost impossible for a country to take part in intercontinental trade or for a company to transport the raw materials in bulk from the site to the factory. In addition to this, the shipping industry is also required for affordable import/export of manufactured goods as well. Thus, it is easily understandable why shipping industry is indispensable not only for a country’s economy but for the global economy as well. The international body that supervises the international shipping industry is the International Maritime Organization.

International Maritime Organization

The International Maritime Organization or IMO is a specialized agency of the United Nations which has been tasked with the duty of regulating and overseeing the international shipping industry. The aspects of shipping that are controlled by the IMO include maritime security, efficiency of shipping, environmental concerns, safety, technical cooperation and legal matters. This agency which was formerly known by the name of Inter-Government Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) came into being in 1948 in Geneva and became operational in the year 1959 when its first meeting was held. The IMO has its headquarters in London and has a total of 171 full members along with 3 associate members.

All the member countries of the IMO are bound to ratify the multilateral treaty which has been given the name of Convention on the International Maritime Organization. The IMO has a number of technical committees and sub-committees that come up with regulations for the emerging problems of the shipping industry. They are also responsible for developing codes that are used by all of the member nations. The information regarding the signal codes and other regulations that have been passed by the IMO is available on the website of the agency.

Growth of the International Shipping Industry

With the population of the world increasing at a rapid pace, the growth of the international shipping industry has been gathering speed as well. There has been an unprecedented increase in the amount of the world seaborne trade in the past few years. The amount of goods or cargo that is loaded on the ships has seen a massive rise and as of 2008 has reached a total of 8.2 billion tons. The recession in 2009 had a negative effect on the growth of the international shipping industry but by 2010, the industry mounted a comeback and grew by almost 7%, increasing the total of goods loaded to a whopping 8.4 billion tons. This figure is expected to grow well beyond 10 billion tons by the end of 2015.

Leading Fleets in the International Shipping Industry

Many countries in the world have a large fleet of ships that are used for transporting goods and other merchandise from one part of the country to another and for international trade. Some of the countries that have the largest fleets in the international shipping industry include Panama, Hong Kong, China and Singapore. When it comes to having controlled fleets, Japan and Greece top the list.

World Merchant Fleet

The merchant fleet of the world which includes merchant ships responsible for carrying the cargo from one country to the other is estimated to be around 54,897 ships. More and more merchant ships are added on a regular basis to the world merchant fleet and its number is constantly rising.

Challenges Facing the International Shipping Industry

Even though the growth rate of the shipping industry has seen a massive rise over the years, one of the biggest challenges that ship-owners are facing at the moment is that of overcapacity. They are soon realizing the fact that the growth in the supply side of shipping has not been reciprocated in the same manner by the growth in the short-term demand. Moreover, the fleet utilization level is also being expected to drop below the comfortable level. Also, rising energy costs are another factor that will have a knock-on effect on shipping, as oil and energy become more expensive.

Industry must go back to basics, to become more cost effective. There are no magic solutions, but embracing new technologies, such as Seafasten’s GRID, might be a starting point. It is evident from the data that the future for the shipping industry will be strong, and the general trend among the new cargo ships is towards specialization.