China has surpassed Greece as the greatest ship-owner in the world for the first time in just one critical metric, cementing its strategic importance in transporting raw materials and goods globally.
Firms in the world’s second-largest economy currently own more vessels based on gross tonnage — a key measure of capacity — than any other nation. Greece secured that title in 2013, per Clarkson Research Services Ltd., a unit associated with the largest shipbroker in the world.
China depends on raw materials imported from across the globe to satiate its commodity demand. It is simultaneously a significant exporter of finished items shipped globally in container vessels.
China’s owners are the largest in the bulk commodity and container shipping markets, per Clarkson in a report.
Even though China is now the biggest owner by gross tonnage, it keeps lagging behind Greece in deadweight tonnage, a more closely-tracked metric.
The former measures the internal volume of a ship, while the latter accounts for the weight of goods the vessels can carry.
References: ekathimerini, Hindustan Times, Ship and Bunker
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