Every port has an inland area tributary to it, a cargo shed area, on which it depends for its shipping market. The identification of this “natural” hinterland of a port, or of a range of ports, is of considerable interest to port authorities, port service companies, transportation companies, and regulatory and policy‐making government agencies. A hinterland can be thought of as a cargo shed area in at least two senses: as comprising the domestic origins and destinations of cargoes presently moving through the port, and as the inland area in which the port has a favourable economic position as a trans‐shipper of imports and exports. The two areas so defined certainly have a substantial overlap, but they do not necessarily coincide.
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