The Port of Hong Kong, located by the South China Sea, is a deepwater seaport dominated by trade in containerised manufactured products, and to a lesser extent raw materials and passengers. A key factor in the economic development of Hong Kong, the natural shelter and deep waters of Victoria Harbour provide ideal conditions for berthing and the handling of all types of vessels. It is one of the busiest ports in the world, in the three categories of shipping movements, cargo handled and passengers carried.
Hong Kong is one of several hub ports serving the South-East and East Asia region, and is an economic gateway to mainland China. The port is part of the Maritime Silk Road that runs from the Chinese coast via the Suez Canal to the Mediterranean, there to the Upper Adriatic region of Trieste with its rail connections to Central and Eastern Europe.
Hong Kong set a record in its container throughput in 2007 by handling 23.9 million TEUs (20-foot equivalent units of containers), maintaining its status as the largest container port serving southern China and one of the busiest ports in the world. Some 456,000 vessels arrived in and departed from Hong Kong during the year, carrying 243 million tonnes of cargo and about 25 million passengers. The average turnaround time for container vessels in Hong Kong is about 10 hours. For conventional vessels working in mid-stream at buoys or anchorages, it is 42 and 52 hours respectively.