2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Containerships 2100 2006 2114 2101 2156 2964 3118 3109
Bulk Carriers 204   232   241   221    248 1109 2115 2332
Tankers (VLCC)   367   393   379   381    369   387   392   369
Product Tankers   625   712   821   801    792   741   753   763
  1. Study the table above – showing the number and type of various ships calling at Port Zed – and answer the questions set.

1.1   Which type of ship would you see more often in Port Zed now?

1.2  An aluminum smelter has been built at Port Zed and bauxite (the raw material from which aluminium is ultimately made) has to be imported, while the aluminium ingots are exported in containers and other aluminium products are exported in bulk.

1.2.1   Basing your answer on the information provided in the table, when did this aluminium smelter begin to affect shipping at Port Zed?

1.2.2  According to the table, which ship types have been affected by the construction of the aluminium smelter?

1.2.3  Explain why the numbers each of these ship types have been affected by the construction of the aluminium smelter.

1.3   Do you think that an oil refinery is located near to Port Zed? Answer YES or NO.

1.4   Give two reasons for your answer to Question 1.3.

1.5   What is the average number of VLCCs that call at Port Zed per year?

1.6   Write a report in which you outline the recent developments at Port Zed, and give your opinion on how shipping activities will develop in the next five years.

  1. Read each of the following extracts of articles from various maritime journals. Write down how you think owners of various types of ship will react to each of the news contained in each extract.


Following good rains this year, grain surpluses in Country X have reached record volumes this year. The National Grain Producers’ Council estimates that over 4 million tons will be available for export this year. At $123 per ton, the surplus is likely to yield record profits for farmers in the grain belt. Agricultural minister Carlos Ramirez was delighted at the figures. “This will restore confidence in our agricultural sector after several years of poor crops.”


(Shipowners and brokers can learn much about future shipping activities at Port A from this article.)

The Minister of Energy in Country Y, Mr Gude Maso, has announced that a new dam will be built in the 350-metre wide Cango Gorge, 210 kilometres north-west of Port A. The dam will be 105 metres high and apart from water supply for the extensive grain and cattle farming activities in the area, vast amounts of hydro-electric power will be generated by a huge powerstation to be built within the northern bank of the Cango River. The powerstation will have four 415-megawatt turbines that will be ordered from Hitachi Heavy Engineering Company in Japan. Some of the power generated will be used at a new aluminium smelter to be located at Port A for which alumina will be imported via a new bulk terminal that will come into service next year. The rest will be used in Port A and Bee City, 150 kilometres to the west of the new dam. Power will be carried by high voltage powerlines, and the 533-kV powerline system includes two converter stations, for which transformers will need to be imported, probably also from Japan. It is estimated that about 2200 pylons will need to be constructed, and, in the absence of suitable manufacturing facilities in the country, the steel for the pylons will be imported from Sweden. The huge amounts of bulk cement and steel for the dam, the pipelines, the electrical switchgear, and the cabling will also need to be imported. A new road system will have to be built to move the imported cement, steel, machinery and earth-moving equipment for which Kabota Japan will probably be the successful bidders.

Maso was confident that the expansion of industrial and agricultural production that will be possible by the availability of vast amounts of power and water from the dam will justify the expense of its construction. He emphasised that the entire south-western part of Country Y will benefit directly from the mega-million-dollar project. “But even the most remote part of the country will benefit, and literally thousands will be employed in this major project” he told journalists on Tuesday. “So the entire country will benefit in so many ways, while our neighbours have also indicated that they will be keen to buy electricity from the dam,” he added. This will mean additional powerline systems and more switchgear will need to be imported.

Port A has good infrastructure with seven bulk berths with a minimum water depth of over 13 metres and eight berths for general cargo and two berths for containerships of about 230 metres. Four gantry cranes handle containerised cargoes at the port.

  1. Look at the graph below and list everything that a shipbroker specialising in the chartering of VLCCs will be able to learn from it. Note the trends in the volumes of export oil going to the two countries, and also calculate the approximate number of tanker-loads that will be needed to move the oil in the years 2015 and 2020 if the anticipated vessels have a 250 000-tosn cargo capacity.