An empty container transportation centre has started operations at the Port of Shanghai, the largest container port in the world.
Located in the Yangshan Special Comprehensive Bonded Zone, the empty container transportation centre for Northeast Asia kicked off operations on 3 September.
The new centre has capacity to handle a throughput of 3 million TEU per year and it is expected to expand the port’s handling capability, boost domestic and foreign trade, and solidify Shanghai’s status as an international shipping centre, official sources said.
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“The new centre will help us to apply digitalised and intelligent management to promote communications between ports and shipping enterprises, so as to provide empty container services for shipping operators as well as customers in Northeast Asia, along the Yangtze River Delta region, and areas along the Yangtze River,” said Gu Jinshan, Chairman of Shanghai International Port Group (SIGP) who operates the port.
According to SIPG, the launch of the centre means more empty containers will be allocated to the Yangtze River Delta region and surrounding coastal ports via water routes, highways, and railways.
Construction works for the centre began in August 2021, jointly developed by SIPG and shipping giants Maersk, CMA CGM, MSC and Evergreen.
Despite disruptions brought by COVID-19, the Shanghai port saw a steady container throughput growth from January to August, with a traffic of 26.8 million TEU from January to July.
“As the world’s largest container port, the Shanghai port is speeding up the construction of a global shipping network together with ports around the Yangtze River Delta region,” said Zhao Yihuai, deputy director of Lin-gang Special Area Administration.
“The centre will further raise the resource allocation efficiency of the Shanghai port and contribute to the Shanghai port’s global competitiveness and international influence.”
Earlier in July, the authorities of Shanghai and Beijing ordered further rounds of COVID-19 testing following the discovery of new cases in the two cities.