The Guangzhou Port will be a crucial part of the world-class shipping hub of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and the city strives to build the Guangzhou Free Trade Port by 2020, according to an action plan recently released by the municipal government.
According to the Three-Year Action Plan on Building the Guangzhou International Shipping Hub (2018-2020), the southern Chinese city will focus on developing water tourism and the water leisure industry. It will formulate a medium and long term plan for the cruise ship industry, striving to build a national cruise tourism development experimental zone. The city will also encourage overseas cruise companies to open more routes in Guangzhou and provide more tourism resources in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.
Guangzhou will also strengthen its efforts to develop the yacht leisure industry and build first-rate water tourism brands with global influence. It will work hard to promote the free travel of yachts between Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macao and improve the entry and exit management of yachts to ensure that they can enter Guangzhou visa-free for 15 days.
The action plan also revealed Guangzhou's determination to build the Guangzhou Free Trade Port and become more open to the outside world. It will strive to increase its clearance efficiency and build "digital checkpoints", ensuring that the customs clearance services at Nansha Port are available around the clock.
By 2020, Guangzhou will have invested 100 billion yuan ($15.8 billion) in its port and shipping projects and the port will be able to process an additional 30 million tons of cargo and 5 million TEUs. By that time, the cargo-handling capacity of Guangzhou Port will stand at 650 million tons, with containers making up over 60 percent of the total. There will be 120 international cargo ship routes operating between Guangzhou and the world and the city's total number of enterprises in the port and shipping industry will reach 60,000.
In the future, Guangzhou will also enhance multimodal shipping, building sea-air transport channels and railway-water transport hubs. The city will increase efforts to build fast channels connecting Nansha Port with Guangzhou's neighboring cities and cut down expressway costs for logistics companies.
Containers are discharged from cargo ships at Guangzhou Port. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]