Korea Shipping Partnership to run Busan terminals

Signing ceremony of the Korea Shipping Partnership in 2017. Credit: Korea Shipowners' Association
Signing ceremony of the Korea Shipping Partnership in 2017. Credit: Korea Shipowners' Association

Korea Shipping Partnership (KSP) will operate terminals in Busan New Port when the facilities are ready in 2022.

The quasi-alliance of 14 South Korean intra-Asia-focused liner operators, including Hyundai Merchant Marine, SM Line Corporation, Taiyoung Shipping, Korea Marine Transport, and Dongjin Shipping, will operate two new terminals in Busan New Port when the facilities begin operating.

KSP will form a terminal operating company (TOC) with Busan Port Authority (BPA) for this purpose.

The announcement from South Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF) is part of plans to enable small- and mid-sized shipping companies to enjoy lower cargo handling costs.

BPA is Busan port’s governing body but does not yet operate any of the terminals at northeast Asia’s busiest transhipment port.

The three terminals that will be operated by KSP and BPA are being developed under phases 2-5 and 2-6. The terminals under phase 2-5 will have three berths, while the terminal under phase 2-6 will have two berths.

The terminals are likely to cater to ships operated by KSP’s members, based on the purpose behind MOF’s plans.

Busan was the sixth-busiest container port in the world in 2017, handling 20.49 million teu, up from 19.46 million teu in 2016.

In an ongoing effort to encourage consolidation among the TOCs in Busan, the MOF plans to reduce the number of TOCs active in Busan North Port to two from three at present. A fight for market share among the various TOCs is believed to undermine Busan’s competitiveness.

Operations that are presently run by CJ Logistics and Sebang Busan Terminal Co. would be integrated, while Dongbu Pusan Container Terminal will retain its operations.