Assessment of the competitiveness of ports as bunkering hubs : a case study of Singapore and Shanghai.
Chen, Desiree Wanli.
Wong, Kevin Hui Shiung.
Date of Issue2008
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
As bunkering constitutes almost 50% of a ship’s voyage costs, the selection of competitive bunkering ports is an important consideration for ship operators and managers. However current research on the bunkering industry is limited. This paper formulates a method for assessing the competitiveness of ports as bunkering hubs and includes case studies on the ports of Singapore and Shanghai; Singapore being the largest port in terms of cargo volumes and bunker lifting, while Shanghai is on course to developing into a major shipping hub. The assessment consists of ten attributes identified from industrial interviews. Through surveys, these attributes were ranked by ship operators and managers, in terms of their importance when selecting a bunkering port. The respondents also assessed Singapore and Shanghai based on the ten attributes. Bunker quality, market transparency, bunker price competitiveness, reliability and punctuality of suppliers, and bunkering facilities are identified as the five most important attributes. These attributes are analysed in detail with regards to their determinants and importance to ship operators and managers. Statistical techniques are applied in the analysis of the survey results. The weighted scores for the performance of the ports of Singapore and Shanghai in terms of the various attributes are computed by taking into consideration their importance. Location of port and stability of political environment are identified as the strengths of Port of Singapore, while reliability and punctuality of suppliers, as well as the availability of low sulphur bunkers are the weakest links. For Port of Shanghai, stability of political environment and bunker quality are the best performing attributes, while bunker price competitiveness and availability of low sulphur bunkers are the weakest performing areas. In the case studies, the performance of the ports of Singapore and Shanghai is assessed in terms of the 5 most important attributes in selecting a bunkering port, based on industrial findings and survey results. After totalling the weighted average scores for the ports of Singapore and Shanghai, the paper concludes their relative positions in terms of competitiveness as bunkering ports. General recommendations are given for the benefit of operators and authorities of other ports. Specifically, recommendations are also given for port operators and authorities from the two ports with regards to the weakest areas identified in the survey.
DRNTU::Engineering::Maritime studies::Maritime management and business
Final Year Project (FYP)