Economics of Sea Transport and International Trade
Economics of Sea Transport and International Trade details contractual and commercial essentials that are specific to the maritime industry and covers balance of payments and currency exchange rates. It provides an overview of the economic and commercial issues involved in the chartering, ownership and management of oceangoing ships. It describes canals and ports and economies of scale in ship sizes.
To give a basic understanding of the economic theory of shipping and international trade.
To develop analytical skills and relate theory to empirical evidence.
To communicate effectively through the use of graphs and have an appreciation of statistical evidence.
BASIC ECONOMIC CONCEPTS
Factors affecting demand and supply; opportunity cost.
THE DEMAND FOR SHIPPING
The demand for shipping – derived demand, elasticity of demand.
Demand measurement – distance, ton/miles and tonnes/kilometres.
THE SUPPLY OF SHIPPING
Factors influencing the supply of shipping – tonnage, number and flag.
Productivity and supply trends – surplus tonnage, active fleet, short run supply.
Measuring elasticity of supply.
COST ANALYSIS AND ECONOMIES OF SALE
Basic economic cost concepts – conventional cost analysis in shipping.
Economies of scale in shipping and optimal ship size.
Factors affecting costs including fiscal regimes and flag of registry.
COMPETITIVE MARKETS – TRAMPS
The dry cargo sector and its market characteristics. The cost structure of tramp ships.
The use of breakeven analysis in determining minimum freight rates.
Determination of the equilibrium freight rate.
COMPETITIVE MARKETS – TANKERS
Seaborne trade in crude and products. The structure of the tanker market.
The relationship between the tanker and dry cargo markets. The effect of political and environmental factors and recent changes in the tanker fleet.
LINER TRADES – OLIGOPOLY AND THE COMPETITIVE MARKET
Characteristics and demand for liner services. Pricing behaviour including price discrimination. The relationship between profit maximisation and optimal utilisation
Conferences, alliances and consortia. The effect of international regulation
Customer demand and operators’ search for market dominance.
PORTS, CANALS AND WATERWAYS
The functions of ports, canals and waterways. Structure, costs and efficiency.
Policy with reference to tariffs and investment. Ownership and regulation.
SHIPPING AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE
The pattern of world trade and the demand for shipping.
Trade and economic development – trade flows; absolute and comparative advantage.
Global trading. Free trade versus protectionism.
The role of the World Trade Organisation and G8.
EXCHANGE RATES AND BALANCE OF PAYMENTS
How exchange rates are determined – free floating and regulated markets.
The effect of fluctuations on shipping.
The components of a balance of payments with particular reference to shipping.
The relationship between exchange rates and the factors affecting their fluctuations and a country’s balance of payments.