20 billion-dollar project

New Chinese mega-port to up Singapore

by Port News Editorial Staff

China intends to build a new mega container port in the Wanshan archipelago in Guangdong province. The aim is to challenge the supremacy of the neighbouring port of Singapore in the Asian region and also on a global scale.

The new infrastructure would in fact be only 2500 km away from the world’s second largest port in terms of total tonnage after Shanghai, and the fifth largest in terms of container shipping.

It’s a pharaonic project which could cost over 20 billion dollars. Once completed, the superport could handle 45-50 million TEUs per year, and accommodate the world’s largest ships, thanks to natural seabed depths of up to 30 metres in the archipelago.

In 2021, ports such as Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Guangzhou lost around 6 million TEUs to Singapore, indirectly consolidating its status as a maritime hub.

The fierce internal competition between the three Chinese ports also impedes economies of scale and weakens overall competitiveness. To date, Hong Kong remains Singapore’s main Asian rival, while Shenzhen and Guangzhou lack the free port status and institutional flexibility to become fully-fledged hubs.

The new facility would strengthen trade, promoting the integration of the Greater Bay Area, known as the GBA, a mega region comprising nine cities in the Pearl River Delta, including Hong Kong, Macau, Shenzhen and Guangzhou.

Translation by Giles Foster

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