How do the world’s products get from one place to another? Despite technological advances and the spread of a globalized economy, a staggering 90% of all goods are still shipped by sea.
Even though the shipping industry is one of the world’s oldest, the modern economy would not survive without shipping containers. This shows that it is indeed one of the most critical sectors in the world.
The following are nine interesting facts about the international shipping industry.
Ship Crews have Communication Problems.
Approximately two-thirds of ship crews around the world are unable to communicate while at sea. Furthermore, only 10% of the population has access to the internet.
Shipping is reasonably Priced.
It is still one of the most cost-effective modes of freight transportation.
For example, exporting Scottish cod to China (10,000 miles away), filleting it, and returning it to Scotland is less costly than hiring Scottish staff to do the same job. Another example is that exporting New Zealand tuna to Thailand and then shipping it back to New Zealand is less costly than getting the refining performed in New Zealand.
Long-distance shipping is possible with a container ship.
During its daily journey through the oceans, the average container ship sails the equivalent of 75% of the way to the moon and back in a single year. A big container ship orbits the size of the moon and back about ten times in its lifetime.
There are Six Types of World Merchant Fleet Ships
About every nation in the world owns and runs cargo ships. The Greek merchant fleet is the largest globally, accounting for over 16 per cent of global tonnage.
The following are the six types of merchant fleet ships:
- Ships that carry general cargo
- Bulk carriers
- Vessels for fishing
- Ships that carry containers
- Ships that carry passengers
- Ships that carry petroleum
Large container ships are powerful.
The engine of a big container ship has 1,000 times the capacity of the regular family vehicle. On the other hand, large container ships only fly at a maximum speed of 23 knots (or 26.5 miles per hour) and only 17 knots in poor weather.
Greece, Japan, and Germany own the world’s three biggest fleets.
To put this in context, Japan’s fleet consists of 3,962 ships, while Greece’s fleet consists of 3,032 ships, and Germany’s shipping fleet consists of 2,321. China is ranked fourth, and the United States is ranked sixth.
Denmark’s A.P. Moller-Maersk is the world’s largest shipping firm, with a profit of $936 million in the fourth quarter of 2013.
About 1.5 million seafarers work in the world’s fleets.
Almost every race is reflected in the crews. The average shipworker, on the other hand, is a Filipino man. Filipinos make up nearly a quarter of all crews (nearly a quarter million at sea), with men accounting for 98 per cent of the overall workforce.