China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is anticipated to create demand growth for shipping and Singapore is keen to continue playing an important role in the ambitious development strategy, according to Singapore’s minister for trade and industry Chan Chun Sing.

The Singapore Chamber of Maritime Arbitration (SCMA) has entered into a cooperation agreement with the China Maritime Arbitration Commission (CMAC) to promote maritime arbitration for the effective resolution of maritime disputes.

The vagaries of the increasingly volatile global trading environment were seen in the first half results of container manufacturer Singamas Container Holdings as it revealed its small loss was due partly to hedging-related forex losses as the renminbi rose sharply earlier in the year.

Trade between China and the Middle East will get a boost from an agreement between DP World and Zhejiang China Commodities City Group to jointly construct a new “Traders Market” at DP World’s flagship Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone in Dubai.

Trade facilitation, especially across Asia, is set to be improved with the launch of Global eTrade Services’ (GeTS) Open Trade Blockchain (OTB), an inclusive and extensible blockchain service.

Six months after being given full control of Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port, China Merchant Port Holdings (CMPort) has finally coughed up the remaining $584.2m it agreed to invest for gaining the 99-year port concession.

The Northern Europe gateway ports still have a slight edge but the Southern Europe ports are catching up fast and the way forward should be more towards complementarity than competition, container port industry experts said at a webinar organised by the Contship Italia Group.

Top container ship lessor Seaspan just added significant new financial muscle, with new shareholder, Canadian investment company Fairfax Financial Holdings, pumping in an additional $1bn into the company.

Smaller port operators may have a chance to leapfrog into the limelight as global trade patterns change, with gateway ports gaining prominence, and this year could prove to be transformative.

China Merchants Port (CMPort) has taken over full operation at Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port and paid out $292.1m as the first tranche of $973.7m it has agreed to pay for an 85% stake in the port, it said in a stock market announcement.

Page 1 of 2