The Shanghai Port needs no introduction in the world! It is the busiest and largest container port globally. It is a vast trading platform and one of the most desired tourist attractions in the country. It took over the position of being the busiest seaport in the world from Singapore in 2010 and has retained its position for a decade. Almost all the countries that engage in international trade know the dominance of the port of Shanghai. But how did it all start? Let us turn the pages of history to discover some interesting facts about it!
Port of Shanghai: Establishment & Growth
The Shanghai Port is situated on the Yangtze River delta facing the East China Sea and the Hangzhou Bay on the South. It embodies the confluence of three rivers; Yangtze River, Qiantang River and the Huangpu River. It is presently operated by the Shanghai International Port Company Ltd. Here is how the port’s journey has evolved over the years!
Development During The Ming & Yuan Dynasty
- The area of the port was known as Hudu or Shen till the 7th Century AD. It gained its status as a market town in the Sing Dynasty and became an officially known city in 1297 under the Yuan Dynasty.
- It started to develop during the Ming Dynasty. After the construction of the City Wall in 1554 and the City Gold Temple in 1602, its economic importance was recognised.
- During its development in the Qing Dynasty, Shanghai obtained authority over customs collection and started to accept ocean-going vessels.
- In the 19th century, Shanghai Port grew immensely and played a crucial role in the First Opium War. It was declared as one of the treaty ports in 1842.
The Tremendous Growth During The Early 90s
- Under the emergence of the Republic of China in 1927, the port became an official municipality. However, the migration of Russians in the 1920s and 30s led the port to be the fifth biggest city in the world with a vast population of 70% foreigners.
- The impact of the Second Sino-Japanese War was that the Japanese Community got a great influence in the municipality. But it has a positive impact leaving the port with the first factories ever built on a port, kickstarting the industrial sector.
- After the battle of Shanghai in 1937, the Japanese took over control and held the place till 1945.
- In 1949, it was the People’s Liberation Army who took over the control of the port.
Downfall During The Mid 20th Century
- The Shanghai Port grew to international significance and glory in the mid 20th century. Its expansion helped the country gain financial stability and stature in the world.
- It turned into a busy industrial sector supporting the cause of the People’s Revolution.
- It has been a significant contributor of taxes and revenues to China throughout the glorious history of the People’s Republic. However, this contribution cost a lot to the port, leading to its deterioration. Its growth was also limited during that period.
- China could not afford this deterioration, given the importance and influence of the port’s development on the country. After a decade of downfall, the port of Shanghai received permission to implement its economic reforms.
- The port has developed into a massive trading hub ever since its last reform. Its connections with neighbouring countries and largest economies led to its immense growth. In 2010, it finally beat Singapore to become the busiest seaport in the world.
As of the present scenario, the Shanghai port is a brand, the largest growing economy in the world and a source of China’s financial stature. Its engagement in the international trade industry has yielded immense gains to the country. And every trader must know about this hub of trade in the world!