Editorial / 24 Sep 2023

Singapore named top maritime centre for 10th year

The Xinhua-Baltic International Shipping Centre Development Index (ISCDI) is back for its 10th year. Produced by China Economic Information Service, a subsidiary of Xinhua, in collaboration with the Baltic Exchange, the yearly index covers all aspects of a shipping centre environment including business factors covering several professional maritime service providers. This includes shipbrokers, port factors such as cargo throughput, draught and container berth length; and assessments of the general business environment including customs tariffs and logistics performance.

In this year’s report, Singapore has once again been crowned as the world’s top port city and maritime centre. It is the 10th time in a row that Singapore has topped the ISCDI. The city-state is renowned for its well-established maritime services sector, port services and infrastructure as well as its strategic location at the mouth of the Malacca Strait, which covers a significant amount of international trade movement.

“We would like to congratulate Singapore and the other countries and cities that made it to the top 10,” says Daniel Nordberg, GAC’s Group Vice President, Asia Pacific & Indian Subcontinent.

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“This remarkable achievement is a testament to Singapore’s maritime capabilities and infrastructure, and the limitless potential that lies ahead.”

Shifting trade
Over the years, data from the index has shown the shift of the global trade from west to east.

Singapore’s consistent ranking at the top of the list of the world’s top port cities has considerable implications in the international market, include economic significance, infrastructure and connectivity, reputation as a trade hub and talent and expertise. And, as a consequence, other countries in the Asia region benefit from the smooth flow of goods to and from their respective markets.

“Singapore's position as the top-ranking maritime centre in the world not only signifies its own success but also has far-reaching implications for the entire Asian region,” says Daniel. “It enhances economic growth, trade, infrastructure development, and regional influence, ultimately benefiting Asian countries with a stake in the maritime industry.”

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Single point, many services
GAC Singapore offers a complete range of shipping services and is a single point of contact for all logistics services. The Singapore office is also home to the Hub Agency Centre and GAC Bunker Fuels.

“Singapore’s continuing success as a top maritime centre reflects its vibrant, thriving port, enterprising spirit and ideal position to serve the wider region,” says Sofie Bager, GAC Singapore’s Managing Director.

“GAC has been at the heart of the city, working closely with the port authorities and other stakeholders, since 1981. That strong relationship with both local and wider regional maritime community and our experience, expertise and resources enable us to provide a wide range of world class integrated shipping and logistics services.


"We are also at the forefront of concerted joint efforts being made to drive sustainable shipping in Singapore."

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Top ten
The GAC Group has a presence at every port featured in the top 10 ranking maritime centres:

  1. Singapore
  2. London
  3. Shanghai
  4. Hong Kong
  5. Dubai
  6. Rotterdam
  7. Hamburg
  8. Athens/Piraeus
  9. Ningbo-Zhoushan
  10. New York/New Jersey

This list demonstrates that, even when the maritime industry operates on an international platform, location remains key. Every one of the top ten centres has their own strengths and the necessary infrastructure to attract and retain shipping business. Whilst some boast huge transhipment hubs, others may offer world-class legal finance, legal, shipbroking, IT and classification services.

Change, challenges and opportunities
The eastward shift of the global trade map is an undeniable and defining feature of the current maritime era.

As these tectonic changes continue to unfold, the shipping and logistics world must embrace the opportunities they present while addressing the possible challenges they pose. As a trusted partner and shipping service provider to many industry leaders, GAC is committed to a future that will be defined by cooperation, innovation and an appreciation for the ever-evolving tapestry of global trade.

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