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Port competition between Shanghai and Ningbo

Kevin Cullinane, Yahui Teng and Teng-Fei Wang

Maritime Policy & Management, 2005, vol. 32, issue 4, 331-346

Abstract: The objective of this paper is to analyse the relative competitiveness of the neighbouring container ports of Shanghai and Ningbo in China and to develop a view of the likely future outcome of the competition between them. After assessing the demand for their services within what is hypothesized as a shared hinterland, current supply and future expansion plans are detailed and considered within the two ports’ wider development strategies. The relative competitiveness of the two ports is then evaluated on the basis of price and quality of service, as embodied within the concept of generalized cost as incurred by customers. A critical political dimension is a necessary element of this analysis. It is concluded that continued economic development in the hinterland, central government policies on regional development and China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) will all contribute to growing demand for port services. However, Ningbo will continue to gain greater market share as the result of advantages in its natural endowments (particularly depth of water), price (especially in terms of recovering the cost of capacity expansions) and quality of service improvements that are predicted to emerge as the result of currently planned enhancements to inland transport infrastructure and logistical systems.

Date: 2005
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