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Top 15 Busiest Cargo Ports in the World

Top 15 Busiest Cargo Ports in the World: Ports are pivotal nodes in the global supply chain and transportation network, facilitating the movement of goods and cargo worldwide. Some of the busiest seaports handle enormous volumes of container traffic each year, serving as critical hubs of international trade and commerce. In this article, we will examine the top 15 busiest cargo ports in the world, analyzing the key features and locations of these mega ports that handle massive shipments and enable global trade on an unparalleled scale.

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Top Busiest Cargo Ports in the World

1. Shanghai, China

The Port of Shanghai is the busiest cargo port in the world. Located at the mouth of the Yangtze River near Shanghai city, this port handled 47.1 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) in 2021. Shanghai port has expanded rapidly since the 1990s as China emerged as the world’s largest trading economy. Its strategic location, extensive infrastructure, and connectivity to industrial zones and inland transport networks contribute to its leading position for container throughput globally.Top 15 Busiest Cargo Ports in the World

2. Singapore

Singapore is home to the second busiest cargo port worldwide, handling 37.2 million TEUs in 2021. Its geographical location makes it a natural gateway between East Asia and the Indian subcontinent/Middle East. Singapore port is known for its excellent infrastructure, high productivity, and connectivity to over 600 ports globally. It has benefitted immensely from the rise of global trade and serves as a leading transhipment hub.

3. Ningbo-Zhoushan, China

The Port of Ningbo-Zhoushan in eastern China has grown rapidly to become the third busiest port worldwide, handling 34.7 million TEUs annually. As a vital manufacturing and export centre in China, Ningbo-Zhoushan Port serves the vibrant Yangtze River Delta region. Its deep-water berths, extensive storage, and feeder services to Shanghai port have fueled its emergence as a mega container hub.200 Romantic Love Messages

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4. Shenzhen, China

The Port of Shenzhen saw 33 million TEUs in annual container volume, positioning it fourth globally. Adjacent to Hong Kong, Shenzhen developed as a manufacturing powerhouse and major export processing zone. Its state-of-the-art terminals, seamless customs procedures, and rail links across China make it a leading port for factory exports.

5. Guangzhou Harbor, China

Guangzhou Harbor in southern China experienced a container throughput of 27.7 million TEUs in 2021. Guangzhou port plays a key role in China’s Pearl River Delta industrial zone and serves as a hub for exports from the manufacturing-intensive region. It houses some of the longest container berths worldwide and is a vital gateway for trade with Hong Kong.

6. Busan, South Korea

The Port of Busan, located on Korea’s southeastern coast, handled 23.1 million TEUs in 2021, cementing its status as the sixth busiest cargo port globally. As Korea’s primary maritime gateway, Busan port facilitates trade between Northeast Asia and the world. It offers extensive infrastructure, efficient operations, regular feeder connections to China, and smooth intermodal transport links.105 Good Morning Love Message

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7. Hong Kong, China

Despite increasing competition from nearby mainland Chinese ports, Hong Kong port held strong as the seventh busiest globally with 20.2 million TEUs. Strategically situated on the Pearl River estuary, Hong Kong owes its success to its geographic location, connectivity to Shenzhen and Guangzhou ports, and well-developed infrastructure. The port remains a leading transhipment hub linking Southeast Asia with northern Asia.

8. Qingdao, China

The Port of Qingdao in eastern Shandong province handled 20.1 million TEUs in 2021, ranking it the eighth busiest port worldwide. Located just north of major industrial zones, Qingdao benefits from significant hinterland cargo flows. Recent expansions have increased its capacity and bolstered its position as a vital hub for Northeast Asian trade.

9. Tianjin, China

With 18.5 million TEUs in annual throughput volume, Tianjin climbed to number nine among the world’s busiest cargo ports. As the primary maritime gateway to Beijing, Tianjin has become a critical hub for northern China’s industrial activity and booming container volumes. Its efficient rail links to inland cities further add to its importance in China’s trading system.Information Guide Nigeria

10. Port Klang, Malaysia

Serving as Malaysia’s main container port, Port Klang moved over 15.3 million TEUs in 2021, securing the tenth spot globally. Strategically located along the Straits of Malacca, it is a vital regional transhipment hub for East-West trade. Port Klang offers excellent connectivity to the Malaysian economy and efficient feeder links to ports across Southeast Asia.FCE Zaria NCE Part-time Academic Calendar 2023/2024

11. Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Taiwan’s largest port, Kaohsiung is the 11th biggest container port worldwide, handling nearly 15 million TEUs annually. Positioned on the southwest coast facing the Taiwan Strait, Kaohsiung Port benefits from direct calls by major container lines and seamless transport links to China. The recent expansion of its terminals and freight station capacity have boosted its importance as a regional transhipment centre.

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12. Antwerp, Belgium

The Port of Antwerp in northern Belgium is ranked 12th globally, with 14.1 million TEUs in annual throughput. One of Europe’s largest ports, Antwerp owes its success to its location – accessible to industrial northwest Europe via the Scheldt River. It offers well-developed container handling infrastructure and multimodal transport connections.ABSU Second Semester Academic Calendar 2022/2023

13. Dalian, China

Dalian port in Northeast China recorded container volumes of 13.6 million TEUs in 2021, placing it within the top 15 busiest cargo ports worldwide. Located near major manufacturing zones, Dalian handles significant volumes of breakbulk cargo like ore, coal, and oil. Recent terminal upgrades and hinterland rail links have expanded its container handling capacity.NYSC Portal

14. Xiamen, China

Yet another fast-growing Chinese port, Xiamen handled 13.1 million TEUs in 2021, cementing its status as one of the busiest container ports globally. Strategically located on China’s southeast coast facing Taiwan, Xiamen port has benefitted immensely from China’s burgeoning trade flows and overseas shipments. Extensive port infrastructure and connectivity to industrial zones fuel its continued growth.

15. Tanjung Pelepas, Malaysia

The most recently constructed mega port on this list, Malaysia’s Tanjung Pelepas saw nearly 11 million TEUs in annual throughput, ranking 15th worldwide. This port’s strategic location, modern facilities, and connectivity to vital East-West trading routes have propelled its rapid ascent as a transhipment centre for the region. It provides significant capacity and handles overflow cargo from Port Klang.JAMB Portal

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Conclusion

In closing, the top 15 busiest cargo ports worldwide exemplify the massive scale of today’s maritime transportation and their role as critical conduits in the global supply chain. Enabled by the continuous expansion of port infrastructure and dramatic growth in maritime trade, these mega ports handle ever-larger volumes of containerized cargo each year. Developing economies in Asia – especially China – now dominate the world’s busiest container ports. However, mature hubs in Belgium, Malaysia and South Korea continue to rank among the largest based on their strategic geography, excellent facilities and seamless transport links. As international trade grows in volume and complexity, the shipping industry increasingly relies on these high-capacity ports to fulfil the world’s cargo distribution needs. Their infrastructure investments and operational excellence will be integral to global economic growth in the future.

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