The European Union's white paper on transport, published back in 2011, states, among others, that in order to reduce transport-related emission of CO2, particularly over longer 300+ km hauls, cargo traffic should switch to eco-friendlier modes, like barges traversing inland waterways.
The container became pretty much the staple of modern global supply chains, chiefly because its ship-trucktrain-port handiness has been standardized. Under whatever latitude we're doing business, it's nowadays shaped like a box.
Ports have always had a significant role in making sure that trade runs as smoothly as possible - be it globally, regionally, or locally. In Finland, for instance, nearly 90% of exports and 80% of imports are transported by sea.
We know that the global population will continue to grow at pace, with the United Nations and World Bank projections putting the global population at 8.6b by 2030. That's an additional one billion people in the next 12 years.
Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) are generally considered a source of growth. However, especially investments of state-controlled foreign enterprises in critical technologies and infrastructure, such as ports, cause concerns again and again.
It's probably safe to assume that during the 26 June 2016 referendum on whether to stay in or leave the EU, as well as the heated debate prior to it, the man on the Clapham omnibus did not go to the trouble of scrutinizing how exactly the customs procedures would look like if the UK decided to file for divorce.
When I finished my MBA studies back in Hamburg in 1999, I had this gut feeling that it will be a stepping stone for developing an international managerial career, "international" being the key word here.