Day 3 in Shanghai once again did not disappoint. After another beautiful breakfast, we boarded the bus and headed off to Ocean East International Logistics. Today we had Mac Sullivan traveling with us on the bus who is currently the Greater China Trade Lane Manager for Toll Global Forwarding. Mac graduated from the University of Georgia and has lived in Shanghai for 8 years now. It was really cool getting to talk with Mac because of all his experience in the logistics industry as well as his unique career path. Mac went to school in Georgia yet he studied abroad in Spain, moved to Thailand, and then ended up in Shanghai. He now has a wife he met in China along with two kids who he said he plans to move with back to the US within the next few years in order to get his children the American education system. Before talking to us about the logistics industry Mac also talked about life in Shanghai and again reiterated the high cost of living. For example, the apartment in the city of Shanghai are $20,000 per square feet and cost millions of dollars. People that are not making huge salaries have to live 2 or more hours outside of the city and commute into work almost every day. Additionally, if you want a car you have to pay $10,000 just for a license plate. This is meant to limit the amount of traffic present in the city which is already bustling with buses, taxis, and cars.
Once we arrived at Ocean East International Logistics we received an excellent hour-long presentation from one of the top people inside of the company. We learned that Ocean East is a holding company of A.P. Moller Maersk Group and helps the development of the Lingang Shipping Service Center Area. Ocean East is located strategically close to the Yangshan Deep Water Port which is a vital part of the Shanghai shipping hub. Following the presentation in which we dived into how they handle shipment, the development of the industry, and the future of the industry we then headed over to one of their warehouses in which we got to see some of their automated technology first hand. It was absolutely crazy in order to see the automated technology carry around the shipment boxes by themselves as well as plug themselves into chargers once they needed battery. The manager also explained to us that they can save energy at night by shutting off all the lights in the factory since the machines do not need to see. It was awesome seeing such a well-recognized and established country.
Next, we bused to the nearby Yangshan Deep Water Port which is the world’s largest shipping port. It houses container ships in the Hangzhou Bay and is in possession of 4900 meters worth of coastline. Mac let us know that it is 3 times the size of the world’s next largest port and handles 36 million containers. It was insane how long the port stretches on for and to see the machines loading the containers onto the boats which hold anywhere from 2,000 to 18,000 containers. It was also impressive to know that the ships unload, reload, and leave the port in a matter of 24 hours.
Once we returned to the hotel Matt and I headed over via Taxi to the Pearl Market to do some shopping. I was lucky enough to get 4 NBA jerseys for under 50 dollars as well as numerous artisan work that I love. Following the shopping trip, we returned back to the hotel for a ping pong tournament due to the fact that ping pong plays such a vital role in Chinese culture as showcased by tables being found in malls and parks.