This paper considers the ways in which advances in transport technology alter the time-space framework within which many social and economic decisions are made. The revolution in sea transport since about 1960 has had the effect of reducing economic distances in the world. This has altered the basis of choice between land and sea transport in the haulage of raw materials. The response of industries has been towards the establishment of larger plant at a few deep-water ports. The process is particularly evident in the case of the steel industry but the trend is apparent also in a range of raw-material processing activities from chemicals to sugar refining and grain milling. In the case of container shipping there has also been concentration into fewer ports but the impact on locational decisions is more complex. It is likely that containerization, by reducing the importance of land transport costs, has freed export-orientated manufacturing industries from the need to locate at ports, thereby allowing other locational factors such as land values, labour, etc., to exercise greater influence in locating in distant areas of a country. The conclusion is that the revolution in sea transport is still working its way through the economies of the industrial countries, and that the trend to coastal locations will continue for many industries.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Paper presented at the International Congress of the Institutes of Navigation held at the University of Sussex, England, from 10 to 14 September. The Congress was sponsored by the Institutes of Navigation in Australia, France, the Federal Republic of Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Royal Institute of Navigation

    Royal Geographical Society, 1 Kensington Gore
    London SW7,   England 

    Royal Institute of Navigation

    1 Kensington Gore
    London,   England 
  • Authors:
    • Couper, A D
  • Publication Date: 1979-9

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00303236
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Conf Paper
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 15 1980 12:00AM