Speaking today (August 20, Ontario time) at the 54th Annual General Meeting and Conference of the Association of Canadian Port Authorities in Hamilton, Ontario, the Deputy Director of Marine, Mr Tung Hon-ming, said that the Hong Kong port, strategically located on the Far East trade routes and at the centre of the fast developing Asia-pacific Region, has ranked the top three busiest container ports in the world in terms of total container throughput.
Mr Tung said that Hong Kong, as a marine centre in Asia, attracts local and international shipping companies to establish their bases. By the end of June 2012, there were 2,158 ships registered in Hong Kong with a total gross tonnage of 77.9 million.
“The port of Hong Kong is performing the gateway to southern China” said Mr Tung. “About 204,700 vessels entered Hong Kong waters in 2011, with about 400 liner services per week connecting to 500 destinations worldwide. Of these, about 220 were intra-Asia shipping services. These figures underpin Hong Kong’s position as a regional hub port.”
The Hong Kong port is renowned for its efficient cargo handling operations. The average turnaround time for container vessels at the container terminals is about 10 hours. The Hong Kong port handled 24.4 million TEUs of containers last year. The nine container terminals at Kwai Chung and Tsing Yi have a total of 24 berths and a total annual handling capacity of over 19 million TEUs.
“The Hong Kong port is an invaluable economic infrastructure of the city. It handles 90% of our freight in tonnage terms. The port and related sectors directly contribute 2.3% (US$5 billion) to Hong Kong’s Gross Domestic Product and account for 2.7% (95,000 jobs) of total employment,” Mr Tung added.
To strengthen the position of Hong Kong as a premier logistic hub in the region, the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is exploring the development of the 10th container terminal and formulating the strategic development plan for Hong Kong port up to 2030. A bridge connecting Hong Kong, Zhuhai and Macao is being built and will complete in 2016. A new cruise terminal will also come into operation next year.
“The new cruise terminal will attract home-porting operations and new shipping businesses to Hong Kong, and in turn benefit Hong Kong’s port and maritime-related sectors as a whole,” Mr Tung said.
Ends/Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Issued at HKT 08:01