(Yicai Global) Jan. 17 -- The Yangtze River Delta Region is to focus on building its substantial port resources, which include some of the planet's biggest and busiest, into a world-class port cluster, according to government leaders attending the ongoing provincial-level 'two sessions' meetings.
Gathering to discuss directions and priorities for the coming year, the provinces' top legislature and political advisory bodies have agreed to work together on developing and integrating the region's port resources in line with directions from the State Council, or national cabinet.
The Yangtze River Delta region comprises the eastern city of Shanghai and parts of Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Anhui provinces and is one of China's most economically developed and densely populated areas.
The cluster comprises 16 ports, each with an annual handling capacity of at least 100 million tons. That gives it the densest distribution of ports and the largest handling capacity in China. In 2018, it processed almost a third of all the cargo passing through China's ports at 4.4 million tons.
Shanghai Port has the world's largest annual container handling capability and last year shifted 43.3 million standard-sized containers. Ningbo-Zhoushan Port in Zhejiang province is the world's busiest for tonnage moved. It is the only port in the world with an annual capacity of over 1.1 billion tons. Last year it handled 1.12 billion tons of goods.
Shanghai will formulate and improve its '1+N' planning and policy system for the Yangtze River Delta this year, Ruan Qing, deputy director of the Shanghai Municipal Development and Reform Commission, said at the meetings. Zhejiang will push for the upgrading of its smaller Yangshan Port to be part of this world-class port cluster, Governor Yuan Jiajun said.
Anhui will promote cooperation between its capital Hefei's Xinqiao International Airport with Shanghai's Pudong and Hongqiao airports, said Zhang Tianpei, director of the Anhui Provincial Development and Reform Commission. It will also enhance cooperation between its ports and those in Shanghai, Zhoushan and Ningbo.
The Yangtze River Delta should encourage specialization and cooperation between the ports along Hangzhou Bay, which is bordered by Shanghai and Zhejiang province, including Shanghai's Yangshan Deepwater Port, the State Council said in December.
The region should work to make the Shanghai International Shipping Center larger and more powerful, accelerate the modernization of the Ningbo-Zhoushan Port and encourage port groups to strengthen cooperation through cross-shareholdings.
Editor: Kim Taylor