The Port of Antwerp in Belgium and the Port of Guangzhou in China are to collaborate even more closely under the terms of a twinning agreement, which recently took place in the Chinese port city.
Guangzhou signed an agreement with the Port of Antwerp training centre (APEC) in 2010, under which various groups of shipping professionals from the Port of Guangzhou have attended courses.
The twinning agreement now takes the relationship between the ports to a new level, to include among other things commercial collaboration.
The ports of Guangzhou and Antwerp already signed a collaboration agreement back in 2010 for the transfer of skills and know-how under the auspices of APEC.
Since then leading maritime professionals from Guangzhou have received tailor-made training in Antwerp.
By developing a joint marketing approach, both port authorities aim to get both ports included in several more loops.
Other action points in the twinning agreement include the exchange of information on port development and best practices for sustainable enterprise in a port environment.
The twinning agreement also merges well with the philosophy of the ‘One Belt One Road’ initiative that was announced by China in the autumn of 2013.
This project aims to improve connections between the main Chinese industrial cities and trade centres elsewhere in Asia, the Middle East and Europe.
The project is also known as the Maritime Silk Road and the project includes a rail track that roughly follows the route of the ancient Silk Road together with a shipping track that includes South-East Asia and the countries surrounding the Indian Ocean.
Fact File: With an annual freight volume of 510 million tonnes, including more than 16 million TEU, Guangzhou is one of the main container ports in China. This coastal port located in the province of Guangdong is the fifth-largest in China, acting mainly for transhipment of fuelstuffs, raw materials and commercial goods. The ports of Antwerp and Guangzhou are multifunctional and have trimodal connections with the hinterland.