Singapore has been named the leading maritime capital of the world in 2017 in an annual survey compiled by Norwegian firm Menon Economics. The consultancy ranked countries based on 24 objective indicators and garnered survey responses from more than 250 industry experts. Singapore was placed top in three of five categories – shipping, ports and logistics, and attractiveness and competitiveness. With its strategic location and ease of doing business, experts believe that Singapore will remain as the most important port city even after five years.
This is an accolade well-deserved for Singapore as it is an international maritime centre home to more than 130 international shipping groups and over 5,000 maritime-related establishments. In 2016 alone, nearly 140,000 vessels entered the Singapore port. Singapore’s success as a maritime centre can be attributed to its geographical location at the southernmost point of Asia and incentives put in place to encourage shipping companies to set-up their HQs here. These factors make Singapore a Maritime Hub and accounts for 7% of the country’s GDP.
Singapore is not resting on its laurels, though. A new mega port in Tuas was announced in April 2017 to replace four container terminals on the island. The new Tuas mega port, which is scheduled to open in 2021 in phases, will consolidate all container port activities by 2040. Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) will also incorporate a public area to bring people closer to the port and to showcase its role in developments and contributions to the Singaporean economy. Retail stores such as Tesco and Decathlon will be featured alongside cafes. The new maritime hub will even have a jogging track, making the port not only a container terminal but one that is lively and vibrant with commercial spaces and amenities.
With Singapore’s position as a maritime hub, Mileage Communications has an active portfolio in the shipping industry.
Mileage is a member of the MTI Network, the world’s leading incident response network dedicated to serving the shipping, energy, offshore and transportation industries. We provide professional advice and strategies to protect the reputation of these companies during crisis.
Under MTI, Mileage has assisted many well-known companies such as VOPAK, Teekay, Mitsui OSK Lines and IMC , in managing crises, and continues to prepare them for potential crises by actively participating in the companies’ drills.
Over the years, Mileage has conducted over 10 media training sessions for Vopak, the world’s largest independent tank storage company. These sessions were held in China, Indonesia and Singapore. Participants learned useful techniques at the media training workshops and found them extremely useful.
One notable crisis management incident handled by Mileage was the Maritime Maisie which is managed by MSI Ship Management. Carrying over 30,000kg of hazardous substances, Maritime Maisie was involved in a collision with a car carrier and caught fire, and threatened to break up at sea. The chemical tanker, with one cargo hold burning drifted into Japanese waters where it burnt for 19 days. After the fire was extinguished, it took another 82 days for the Korean port of Ulsan to take the vessel in to discharge the remaining toxic chemicals.
Mileage handled this incident very well. As a result, the Chairman of IMC Pan-Asia Alliance, which is the parent company of MSI Ship Management, wrote a letter of commendation praising Mileage’s professionalism in handling the incident.