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Seaborne Trade Seen More Than Doubling by 2030 on China’s Growth

Global seaborne trade will more than double by 2030 as China’s expanding economy drives demand for commodities from crude oil to iron ore, a study showed.

Cargoes will rise to between 19 billion and 24 billion metric tons, Lloyd’s Register, Qinetiq and the Glasgow, Scotland-based University of Strathclyde said today in a report titled Global Marine Trends 2030. That compares with 9 billion tons now, it showed.

The share of the merchant fleet controlled by China will increase to as much as 24 percent by 2030 from about 15 percent in 2010, according to the report. Europe’s share of the oil- tanker market will fall as low as 27 percent from 41 percent as China’s share rises as high as 13 percent from 7.6 percent.

The tanker market is the only one for which deliveries of new vessels are expected to fall over the next two decades, according to the report. China will account for the largest number of new deliveries by 2030, as much as 55 percent, it showed, with South Korea ranking second at about 27 percent. Deliveries of ships carrying dry-bulk raw materials will rise, with China accounting for as much as a 59 percent share.

Global oil consumption will swell to 6.58 billion tons in 2030, a 49 percent increase from 2010, the report showed. Iron-ore demand will rise to 3.85 billion tons from 1.39 billion tons, it showed.

Usage of natural gas will almost double over the 20-year period to 2030 to the equivalent of 5.41 billion tons of oil, according to the report. Coal consumption will rise to the equivalent of 8.44 billion tons from 3.51 billion tons in 2010, it showed.

Lloyd’s Register signs off on the seaworthiness of vessels, while London-based defense contractor Qinetiq is the partner to the U.K. military for a new drone development center.

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