Giant container handling in Asia
In sea trade with shipping containers, music plays in major Asian ports, especially China.
Shanghai is by far the largest container port in the world: in 2021, the handling volume was approximately 47 million TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit; this internationally standardized unit is used to record container handling). The giant container port of Ningbo-Zhoushan is also located in the Shanghai agglomeration. Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Hong Kong lie on the Pearl River Delta in southern China. Twelve of the fifteen largest container ports presented here are located in Asia, seven are in China alone, and one is more or less in China – in Hong Kong. Much of the transportation of goods in China’s foreign trade is by ship, and the People’s Republic of China has an estimated 2,000 ports. After all, Singapore is the second largest container port, strategically located at the southern end of the Strait of Malacca. A little further north is the huge Port Klang, which is actually the container port of the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur. The Port of Busan handles much of South Korea’s foreign trade. It is slightly larger than Los Angeles / Long Beach, the US Pacific port. And Europe? Not in the top 10, rank 11 and 15. Shanghai handles about three times the size of Rotterdam and four times the size of Antwerp. After all – Antwerp has merged with the port of Zeebrugge and is greatly expanding capacities.
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