testata inforMARE

25 November 2020 The on-line newspaper devoted to the world of transports 17:49 GMT+1




10. Global Economic Competition, Shipping and Intermodal Transport

What has been said so far, particularly in the last few sections, points to several key elements regarding the central argument:

  1. the "internationalization" or "globalization" of shipping markets and the competition therein. This global competition is distinct from the international nature which has always been attributed to shipping markets in that it takes place in real time, with instantaneous information and orders throughout the world economy, whereas the international competition in shipping markets consisted of effects and impulses conveyed over time from one area of traffic to another as a consequence of the information obtained regarding the supply and demand positions of holds in the different areas, from the advent of the telephone until the time of the telex;
  2. in the context of this global competition, the acquisition of the control and direction of traffic and the logistical arrangement of the transport cycle become more and more important;
  3. also in the shipping sector, global competition does not take place between individual productive units but between rival economic systems with a territorial basis. Therefore, in the specific case in question, the competition is between port areas and regions on the one hand, and "routes" of international importance on the other;
  4. the solidity of shipping or port-based economic systems with a territorial basis is determined by the efficiency, cost effectiveness and organization of the port complexes - see the discussion in section 3 above regarding port efficiency and organization - by the local transport and that connecting the hinterland, by the information and training systems, by the informal reporting networks of enterprises intended to stimulate innovation, by the cooperation between public and private sectors in implementing infrastructural and territorial plans, by the advanced professionalism, by the services of the advanced tertiary sector in the shipping world, by the logistics - in short, by the level of facilities offered by the shipping centres.

Ultimately, global economic competition in the shipping sector in general and that of container and intermodal transport in particular boils down to the comparison between shipping centres and between metropolitan shipping and port areas.


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