Connecting inland ports and seaports via intermodal transportation: A process evaluation
Paper in proceedings, 2013
The objectives of this research are to identify and qualitatively assess the seaport processes that can be carried out at an inland port to improve economic value add and contribute to supply chain performance. The general frameworks of seaport processes and inland port processes were developed based on the analysis of literature on container seaports, intermodal transportation, and intermodal terminals in inland ports. Face-to-face semi-structured interviews were also conducted on three seaport-inland port pairs that actively use intermodal transportation to move freight between the seaports and connected inland ports. The three pairs are the port of Virginia and Virginia inland port in the United States, the port of Sydney and Minto terminal in Australia, and the port of Gothenburg and Hallsberg terminal in Sweden. To ensure the validity of data, interview data were triangulated with multiple means of data collection, including site visits, e-mail correspondence, and secondary data drawn from internal company reports, archival records, and publicly available port and trade data from port websites. The three port pairs were qualitatively assessed with business model analysis to form possible business models for integrating the inland port with the seaport via intermodal transportation. Findings of this research provide essential understanding for further investigating inland port services offered, examining the business benefits, and offering a benchmark for ports around the world to achieve business and process efficiency.