Ports and global supply chains
This chapter describes the seaport as an enabling node in supply chains, which connects organisational, logistics, and information networks to support the seamless flow of goods. The role of the port as a Global Hub in logistics networks is probably the best known, and is indeed described in, for example, the port vision document of the port of Rotterdam. 2 A second role of the port as described in this particular document is as an industrial cluster. This refers to the location of multiple industrial activities in the port area, where preferably, synergies are achieved. For example, synergies are attained in so-called industrial ecosystems that feature the reuse of byproducts of one facility by another facility as a resource (see Chapter 16). A third role that the port plays is the Information Hub, which facilitates the exchange of information in support of international trade and logistics (see Chapter 14). Here, international trade is supported by information and communication technologies, which progressively set the standards for the global logistics systems. 3 Presently, port community systems provide information services that facilitate the exchange of information between actors involved in trade and logistics processes in and around the port. 4 A fourth role of the port is World Port City, where the development of the port and the urban area around the port area go hand in hand, and where commodity trade and business services such as legal and financial services, and maritime services add value.