Title: Effects of hinterland accessibility on US container port efficiency

Authors: Yulai Wan; Andrew Chi-lok Yuen; Anming Zhang

Addresses: Department of Logistics and Maritime Studies, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong ' Department of Decision Sciences and Managerial Economics, Faculty of Business Administration, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, No. 12, Chak Cheung Street, Shatin, NT, Hong Kong ' Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia, 2053 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z2, Canada; China Academy of Financial Research, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 211 West Huaihai Road, Shanghai, 200030, China

Abstract: As the bottleneck of intermodal transportation systems has shifted from the ship/port interface to the port/inland interface, container port productivity is likely to be constrained by the connection between ports and hinterlands (Heaver, 2006). This study empirically explores the impacts of hinterland accessibility on efficiency of US container ports. A two-stage approach is implemented. First, the container port efficiency is measured by data envelopment analysis (DEA). Then, Tobit regression analysis is undertaken to explore the relationship between DEA scores and ground transportation conditions. The results suggest that provision of on-dock rail facility at container terminals is negatively correlated with container port efficiency, whilst the impacts of Class I rail services are ambiguous. In general, there is a negative association between road congestion around the port and port productivity. However, this relationship tends to be negligible or even positive for primary ports of entry which enjoy substantially larger container throughput volume.

Keywords: container ports; port productivity; hinterland accessibility; on-dock rail facility; data envelopment analysis; DEA; Tobit regression analysis; rail services; road congestion; USA; United States; intermodal transport bottlenecks; container terminals; container throughput volume.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSTL.2014.062908

International Journal of Shipping and Transport Logistics, 2014 Vol.6 No.4, pp.422 - 440

Received: 18 Jul 2012
Accepted: 10 May 2013

Published online: 10 Jun 2014 *

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