Singapore crosses record 3 billion gross tonnage mark in ship arrivals

SINGAPORE: Christmas came in more ways than one for the Port of Singapore, as it crossed a landmark in terms of ship arrivals on Monday (Dec 25).

It registered a record volume of vessels at its terminals in 2023, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) announced on Tuesday.

The annual vessel arrival tonnage – a measure of the traffic of vessels – at the Port of Singapore for 2023 hit just over 3 billion GT (gross tonnage) in 2023 on Monday, up from 2.83 billion GT in 2022.

Gross tonnage is a way of measuring the size of ships and is the measurement of a ship’s enclosed space, including its engine room and non-cargo spaces, while the annual vessel arrival tonnage refers to the combined internal volume of all vessels that arrived at the port in a year. 

The Port of Singapore reached 1 billion GT in 2004 and 2 billion GT in 2011.

Acting Minister for Transport Chee Hong Tat attributed the milestone to Singapore’s strong cooperation between unions, industry and government.

“Other people may try to copy our hardware and infrastructure, they may even try to follow our technologies and operating systems …  But many find it difficult to replicate our trusted tripartite ecosystem in Singapore,” he said.

“This is therefore one of the key elements which gives us an edge to stay ahead of the competition, and take Maritime Singapore to even greater heights.”

Mr Chee was speaking at a ceremony on Tuesday where he also gave thanks to the Japanese shipping company Ocean Network Express (ONE). The arrival of its 98,799 GT Singapore-flagged container ship, ONE OLYMPUS, at Pasir Panjang Terminal on Monday enabled Singapore to cross the 3 billion GT milestone.

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