Monday, January 13 – In working to establish a transshipment port in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) Board Members met with a delegation from Qianhai Shenzhen, Hong Kong to discuss areas for cooperation on Friday.
Transshipment, according to Shipping and Freight Resource Online (www.shippingandfreightresource.com) is the act of off-loading a container from one ship and loading it onto another ship. Friday’s meeting included Minister for Communications and Works Honourable Mark Vanterpool, who told the visiting delegation: “We believe that another [way] in which we can become a part of the global economy is through our ports.” With respect to cooperation with Shenzhen, Honourable Vanterpool stated, “Because of our geographic location on the top of the Caribbean peninsula, we’re perhaps closest in direct line with China. Ships can come to us, and then we can transport cargo down the chain. This is an area of cooperation.”
In response, Party Secretary of the CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee Dr. Wang Rong affirmed that the BVI is an attractive location and the Minister’s recommendations for collaboration in the area of shipping will be considered. After Friday’s meeting, Managing Director of the BVI Ports Authority Mr. Claude O. Skelton Cline commented, “The Authority recognises much can be learned from Shenzhen, as one of the leading transshipment ports in the world with respect to cargo and logistics. Our meeting was an opportunity to further explore any possible opportunities, especially in regards to establishing a transshipment port in the future.”
The handling capacity of Shenzhen Port ranked fourth in the world for 10 successive years, and according to an article on www.marineinsight.com, “the port is regarded as the second most-engaged shipping ports in China, especially in the Southern part of the Chinese mainland”.
The visiting delegation was in the BVI from January 9 – 12 and met with various stakeholders to discuss areas pertaining to cooperation in financial services, tourism, cultural matters and education among others. On Friday, the Government of the Virgin Islands signed Memorandums of Understanding with the City of Shenzhen of the People’s Republic of China and the Authority of Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone of Shenzhen, to formalise the relationship between the jurisdictions. The BVI Ports Authority is responsible for the Territory’s harbours, seaports, cruise infrastructure and port calls.
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